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Care full / Living Space

Marjolein Witte & Jessica Skowroneck

September 10 - October 30, 2022

Living Space is an installation by Jessica Skowroneck and Marjolein Witte, in which they enter into a visual dialogue with each other about the relational dependency between humans, city and nature.

Architecture and nature; we look at them as if they were separate realms. Humanity is placed outside of the animal kingdom. But are we seeing this correctly? Can we still separate nature from the built environment in 2022, can we as humans place ourselves outside of nature? Look at the Netherlands, look at the city: here you won’t find pristine nature, but a living landscape where people, architecture and nature go together and depend on each other. Plants and animals adapt to artificial structures. For example, it appears that many bird species adapt their nests to architecture, blackbirds sing at higher tones to drown out traffic, and plants in the city produce different types of seeds than their counterparts outside the city.

On the other hand, we humans also need nature and build gardens and parks for our own well-being. The city can be called a nature reserve in itself, where native plants and animals mix with human-introduced exotics. Life and buildings try to fit together.

During a series of walks through the city of Utrecht, Skowroneck and Witte collected images about urban space as a living organism. From an abstract and playful approach to the concepts of nature and architecture, a dialogue emerges between wild and tamed, grown and constructed, intuitive and planned. Where do architecture and nature meet and how do the two behave when they cross paths?

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