Course of restoration of Historic Parks and Gardens

Notice is hereby given that ‘Sapienza’ University of Rome, School of Specialization in Architectural Heritage and Landscape for the study and restoration of monuments, activated for the academic year 2013-2014 a COURSE OF RESTORATION OF HISTORIC PARKS AND GARDENS. This course is alternative but legally equivalent to the traditional course of restoration of monuments (Architectural Heritage and Landscape).

The cultural void and the delay presently existing in Italy in the field of restoration of historic gardens, as opposed to a general European and world situation, gave rise to the idea of setting up a research and dissemination activity; actually, in Italy, historic gardens, both public and private, are neglected or have improper or even dangerous restorations. The awakening of interest in the art of gardens that occurred in Italy since the 80’ of the last century (Carta del Restauro dei giardini storici di Firenze) was not enough to fill the gap, since the initiatives that followed, although in several cases have been of a certain value, have had a different character from that proposed in the present course, since they were focused on the training of a labor or on the modern garden design, neglecting the historical garden theme and its restoration at a professional level. Therefore, considering the large and quality Italian heritage of historic parks and gardens to be protected, the above mentioned cultural void, recognized abroad as in Italy, appears today absolutely serious.

The course has a theoretical and practical character. For this reason specific programs combining past and present, theory and praxis have been developed, thanks to a preliminary work of analysis and synthesis for each disciplines, and then developing a kind of teaching where learning passes through the experience.

The project of restoration of an historic garden will be learn by the student not only through classroom lessons, but also through direct experience, expounding questions, and trying, with the help of teachers, the answers to many problems that will occur along the course. The teaching does not take place by means of seminars (to be used only for specific objectives), but through lectures (theoretical and practical), based on a predetermined schedule.

The structural form and the didactics of the course is therefore carefully planned, but the content and the didactic substance are such to safeguard the freedom of the creative and critical faculties of the students in the relationship between the knowledge and the choices for the restoration plan.

For further information, please visit
School secretariat : and

An urban farming future for Singapore

the Human City Project

With the Thought For Food summit just behind us, here’s a short documentary on urban farming in Singapore.

The prospect of a rising population coupled to the limits of our current model of food production led an innovative creation by Jack Ng. His SkyGreens (as it is called) makes use of vertical space to grow salads in green houses over four floors tall. A rotating system powered by a water wheel makes sure each level of the system gets enough sunlight and its dose of water and nutrients below. As a bonus, the system is extremely energy efficient.

It’s a concept we’ll see many more iterations of as we continue to address the problem of feeding the world population in the future.

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2º. Foro Internacional LALI Guayaquil


– Miércoles 30 de Octubre 2013 –


“Hay varias razones que explican por qué nunca como ahora se había hablado tanto de paisaje, y una de ellas es el papel relevante que el paisaje tiene y ha tenido siempre en la formación y consolidación de identidades territoriales. Esta es la razón que explica que el paisaje actúe a modo de catalizador, de elemento vertebrador de la creciente conflictividad de carácter territorial y ambiental palpable en nuestra sociedad. Ante la pérdida de la idiosincrasia territorial local debida a procesos no consensuados y casi siempre mal explicados, la sociedad civil reacciona de manera cada vez más indignada, generando un estado de opinión que, a su vez, conecta perfectamente con una corriente de fondo que reclama desde hace años, una nueva cultura del territorio”.

D. Joan Nogué i Font, director del Consorci de l’Observatori del Paisatge

El Objetivo…

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James van Sweden, Father of the New American Garden, Dies


One of America’s most influential landscape architects, James van Sweden, FASLA, co-founder of Oehme van Sweden, died last week at age 78 from complications from Parkinson’s disease. Both a designer and prolific author, van Sweden is credited with changing the look and feel of the American landscape, introducing the “New American Garden” aesthetic, which included perennials and wild grasses. His influential gardens go beyond surface aesthetics though and had deeper impact. His free-flowing, grass-filled gardens led the way to today’s broader movement of more sustainable, ecologically-sound landscapes.

In a thoughtful obituary, Washington Post garden critic Adrian Higgins wrote that when Oehme and van Sweden first started their firm together back in 1975, they soon became internationally known for their “radically different approach to landscape design — replacing staid evergreen hedging, bedding annuals and groomed lawns with broad sweeps of long, flowering perennials and ornamental grasses. The vision was…

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Think Space – ‘inbetween’ development

Cities for People

Last week I attended the conference Think Space in Malmö. A very inspiriting day on the theme of “urban development in the inbetween” discussing participatory urban development, urban interventions, art-culture-social innovation as an agent for change. I heard some inspiring presentations and met with some interesting people.

Team Better Block

It started off with an energetic presentation by Jason Roberts who has a background in IT, music and arts and is the founder of team Better Block (based in Texas, US) and who works with artists and local communities on re-imagining and activating underused blocks and spaces. They work with instant actions framed as art projects, showing the potential of a place and that physical and cultural change is possible for the community and authorities. As an example they work with the locals to bring life into an abandoned block by making up a variety of new ground floor businesses, a café…

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A platform for Brussels’ youth

the Human City Project

Bruxitizen is a yearly event that tries to engage the young inhabitants of Brussels to think and discuss about their needs for the capital.

The current edition will take place in St Gillis under the form of an ‘open space’. The concept allows anyone to walk in at any time and join a discussion about issues they believe are important for the well-being of the youth of Brussels. At the end of each session, the participants, together with the organizers, try to formulate actionable recommendations for the city.

This will all take place on Thursday the 24th and Friday the 25th of October.

For more information, visit the Bruxitizen website.


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