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Symposium “Reading Patina, Learning from the deterioration of built landscapes through time”

Technische Universität Berlin, Germany
Date of Event: 
Thursday, July 7, 2016 - 2:30pm to Friday, July 8, 2016 - 6:00pm

The symposium aims to present an overview of previous and related research on the processes and mechanisms influencing built landscapes through time and how monitoring these processes can inform future projects. Presentations from academic researchers and practitioners will enable a breadth of discussion related to this topic. The passage of time leaves traces on the surfaces of materials for example in the form of dirt, wear and tear, subsidence, surface cracks and vegetation growth. These processes of patination and decay highlight the imperfections and points of weakness in built landscapes. By monitoring "patina" the project stakeholders can gain information on the success or failure of the design, detailing, use of materials, construction and/or maintenance. We wish to start a discourse on this subject, develop new methods for monitoring, analysing and learning from these processes, and create a feedback loop to enable practitioners to use this knowledge to optimise future projects.

DAY 1 – Lectures / 14:30-20:00
The first day is aimed at bringing together existing knowledge, an overview of previous research, as well as information and opinions related to this field of research.

DAY 2 – Lectures + Workshop / 9.30-18:00The second day will focus specifically on case study projects in Berlin built between 1990 and 2015 and the processes and mechanisms influencing change after completion. This is a period in which a vast amount of landscape projects were implemented, many by renowned international designers. A combination of low or poor maintenance, overuse or misuse and the inability of Landscape Architects to respond to the situation after completion lead to the accelerated decay of many projects. An interdisciplinary workshop will examine the impact of these processes from different viewpoints

DAY 1 of the symposium will be held in English Preliminary list of speakers:

  • Keynote: Niall Kirkwood „Details of Durability,” Harvard Graduate School of Design (USA)
  • Cordula Loidl-Reisch „Built to be wild,” TU Berlin (DE)
  • Bettina Wettstein „Landscape Architecture - Design Idea and Realisation,” TU Kaiserslautern (DE)
  • Liat Margolis „Smart Landscapes,” University of Toronto (CA)
  • Barbara Deutsch „Landscape Performance,” Landscape Architecture Foundation, USA (to be confirmed)
  • Simon Colwill „Reading Patina,” TU Berlin, DE Further speakers to be announced

DAY 2 will be held in German and English, presentations and discussions in English Presentation:

  • Simon Colwill, „Landscape Architecture and the time factor”, DFG Research Project, TU Berlin (DE)
  • Impulse Lectures on Vandalism!, Climate and decay, Vulnerability and more.
  • Workshop "Learning from change"

The event is free but places for day 2 are limited, early registration is encouraged.

More information: www.objektbau.TU-Berlin.de

Simon Colwill, Fachgebiet Landschaftsbau-Objektbau, TU Berlin
BCSLA Event: 
Project: Telus Atrium Garden
Landscape Architect / Firm: Sharp & Diamond Landscape Architecture Inc in collaboration with Cornelia Hahn Oberlander
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Photo Credit: Brett Hitchins