Broken Nature: the 22nd Triennale in MilanWhile out-of-control anthropogenic climate changes take place in plain sight, the Broken Nature: Design Takes on Survival exhibition at the Triennale until September 1 explores the role of restorative design in reconstructing the ties between natural ecosystems and human beings.
Curated by Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator of Architecture and Design and Director of Research and Development at MoMA, the Broken Nature exhibition is an in-depth exploration of the strands that connect humans to the natural environment that over the years have been intensely compromised, if not completely destroyed. As a solution, it offers a sustainable design that is also restorative, and which takes active part in the reconstruction of nature.
Protagonists of the exhibition are accordingly the projects that aim to correct humanity’s self-destructive course, but also rethink our relationship with the environment and all the species present on the planet, including human beings, which are divided into four sections: the Broken Nature thematic exhibition; the installation of The Great Animal Orchestra; the special show The Nation of Plants, and a pavilion dedicated to twenty-two international participations.
Broken Nature alternates around one-hundred projects of restorative design realized over the last three decades around the world with four works specifically commissioned to international designers. Among the projects on show, Capsula Mundi by Anna Citelli and Raoul Bretzel explores the theme of death through an egg-shaped container made of biodegradable material; Formafantasma One Stream investigates the waste management systems; Ice Stupa reflects upon the consequences of global warming in Ladak; and Kosuke Araki’s tableware is made from recycled food waste…
Next to the thematic exhibition, we find The Nation of Plants, the educational exhibition curated by the plant neurobiologist Stefano Mancuso, who shows us how to take our example from plants, their ability to adapt, and their non-predatory approach to ecosystems, to avoid a catastrophic future for humanity.
The installation of The Great Animal Orchestra is instead a reflection on the need to preserve the beauty of the animal world: created by the musician and bioacoustician Bernie Krause and by the London-based studio United Visual Artists (UVA) on the occasion of its eponymous exhibition in 2016, it brings together the animal vocalisations of animals in their natural habitats recorded by Krause, with UVA’s visual translation of these soundscapes.
The exhibition itinerary finally ends in the pavilion dedicated to twenty-two international participations, with the most virtuous projects coming from around the world as its protagonists: from reflections on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef to the biomaterials of the United States, from the urban regeneration projects of Sri Lanka, to Finland’s development of a smart neighbourhood of low environmental impact…
“Broken Nature invites us to have a greater understanding of the complex and interconnected multiple species systems we live in. – declares Paola Antonelli – It encourages us to adopt a long-term outlook and suggests to visitors a series of concrete measures that can inspire habits and attitudes for reconstructing our ties with nature. Broken Nature celebrates the revolutionary power of the imagination and inventiveness”.