The Green Awareness

The landscape architecture is integrated into our psyche, helping us to feel and experience in a way unparalleled.

Luisa was very practical, she considered the causes as an unstoppable alteration of the reality, and the consequences as the materialization of the insurmountable. With this practical thinking had always achieved the discomfort of her closest ones, preventing that they do not see how the reality exceeded them, and against which, the best policy was the acceptance and the advancement, if this advance was already defined, clear. She did not seem to bother him the most anomalous situations, she had twenty five year old, and she was unalterable.

With Galician father and mother of New York, her life had passed with relative normality until, for reasons of work, she had to travel to Missouri, specifically the city of Saint Louis. She hurt her more than she could accept having to leave her hometown, Wayne, where it never spent anything and, in a way, this made much more secure and peaceful her life. She knew the problems of the world by the digital means of communication… but it seemed so far, although it pass in her own country…

Gateway Arch
Gateway Arch

Her own character made of her travel a mere entertainment, finally only was three hours of flight in airplane. When she was hosted, visited the city, of course who had heard of the Gateway Arch, but had to admit that it was more incredible than she had planned, the design of the architect Eero Saarinen and the engineer Hassnskarl Bandel had become in a reality between 1963 and 1965 and had become in the tourist attraction par excellence, as well as in the largest monument of the era. From its summit, seem to levitate to 192 meters high, she could not believe that the structure weighs 17.246 tons.

Near of her post of work existed also a building, she did not paid much attention, but it would change her view of the life (as in the best films). The Museum of contemporary art in Saint Louis, she think that the building is too grey, disliked, often avoided pass ahead. Over time, the co-workers had told her that the creators of the building, Allied Works, had designed a perfect space for a museum with only 7 million dollars (6.20 million euros). Its inauguration occurred in 2003, and in its 2,508 square meters of space have been multiple art exhibitions.

Contemporary Art Museum Saint Louis

Her traditional reluctance was overcome by the insistence of her friendships and, one afternoon, were encouraged to enter in the Museum, its large windows taught part of the collection and started to enjoy of the event before even of stepping inside, but that was not all. Coincidentally that day (May 23, 2015) it inaugurated a very special exhibition, the Green Varnish, a sculpture in the form of blanket that occupied the large central courtyard of the cafeteria. It was a blow for Luisa, suddenly, the reality was light transformable, ductile, a rug of almost 200 square meters consisting of thousands of plants, for the first time in life, she open the eyes.

From a corner she could see as the blanket rises to two meters, and, just behind, read: «We live in denial within vanishing landscapes«, the unreality of plants that float, the styling of these plants (sedum) capable of supporting desert climates, the mishmash of green tones and, of course, the backdrop: a robust and impenetrable wall of reinforced concrete, made that the mood of Luisa was collapsed. «I have lived away», she thought.

The idea came from a few very special professional, Nomad Studio emerged in 2009 from the fusion of two technicians from different countries, Laura Santín (Spain) and William E. Roberts (USA), whose motive is none other than change the reality that surrounds, in a friendly and positive way. Thus, the main idea of «Green Varnish» is to show society the uncomfortable reality behind a green fabric, this reality has been below of a blanket to be politically correct. Lia Engineering, Collab Portico and Green Roof Blocks collaborated with Nomad Studio.

As they say: «in the depths of the collective consciousness there is knowledge of the big changes we will have to accept for to deal with climate change. «Our response is currently completely reactionary and we express it mainly in two ways: the total rejection, or the application of some kind of green varnish that will allow us to continue in the same direction».

Green Varnish. (Photo: nomad)

During the time that lasted the exhibition, Luisa visited nearly every day, often in the company, others in solitary, she reflected very much looking at the beautiful green box. She used to ask an orangeade, her citric favourite, to enjoy the scenery until 27 September, which would finalized the exhibition. With her tablet began to be interested in what happened in the world, the change (positive) was brewing inside, as it happened with the concrete surrounding her, to challenge the established (such as the sedum that survives in the most adverse conditions). On one occasion, she read a little interview in a magazine specialized in luxury (The Luxonomist) to the designers:

The Luxonomist.- What has been the cost of the intervention and how long will be exposed? 
Nomad Studio.- Green Varnish has been generously funded by the Commission Regional of the arts of Saint Louis (RAC). The period during which the installation is exposed between May 2015 and September 2015.

TL.What kind of plants and how many have been introduced? Has its placement in the blanket followed an orderly or arbitrary design?
NS.- The plants blanket of Green Varnish is made up of around 7,000 plants of 16 varieties of the genus ‘ Sedum spp. ‘ disseminated in an arbitrary way. (Vegetated blanket is a «technical» term)

Green Varnish
Green Varnish. (Photo: nomad)

T.L. When finished the exposure time have developers another place for install it? Have asked other works similar to root of exposure?
N.S.- It is a site specific, created especially for this installation. We have received requests to install it elsewhere when finalized the exhibition, as in the Market Street Boulevard in St. Louis, but we have also received offers from private collectors. The truth is that the response has been very good; the public adores the installation. The Museum of contemporary art in Saint Louis commissioned us a second installation for the spring of 2016. Nomad studio is already preparing the second act of this project which will be installed in May and will conclude in September 2016. The study has conceived it as a play in two acts and this new facility will talk with the first and will continue a message started.

T.L.Our readers tend to be very curious and any information would be welcome.
N.S.- We’d like to point out that the space which has been carried out the installation is fantastic, two of its sides belong to the Museum, a building of Allied Architects. The third side belongs to the Pulitzer Foundation, a building of Tado Ando and the last side is communicating with another courtyard. In the second courtyard is ‘Joe’, by Richard Serra. At the beginning we were intimidated, but we decided to play with space and cause lines of installation. In fact, one of the things that we are most pleased is the comparisons that we have received, positives, with the work of the own Serra.

Green Varnish
Green Varnish (Photo: David Johnson)

«Is to be satisfied», she whispered, «If only knew what it have changed my life». Luisa was on September 22 in the formal farewell of Green Varnish, and took to her friends in the hands (there were also some unknown who joined the event) and promised that she would change the world, at least in her nearest plot. She had understood that only by the analyzing the causes could be avoided the consequences.

Disclosure: The characters that appear in this article, their different personalities and their relationships with each other and with the environment are part of a fiction. The author is not responsible for the views expressed in the article and has no business relationship with any of the companies listed on it.

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