University of Manchester / Société d’Objets Cartographiques
Author of ‘Terra Forma, Manuel de Cartographies Potentielles’
Landscapes that we once took for granted, such as rivers, soils, trees, turn out to be different when we follow the scientists from the Critical Zone and their sensors placed in observatories. Critical zone science helps us to understand the critical places on earth where life is threatened, and where the roles of actors, human and non-human, are unclear. This uncertainty is perhaps the real challenge for architecture at the time of the Anthropocene in the coming years. Through the cartographies of the book Terra Forma, the exhibition Critical Zones at the ZKM and the ethnography of science in action, the conference will explore these changes and how to approach them as architects.
Alexandra Arènes is a landscape architect and now a PhD researcher at the University of Manchester (supervisor Albena Yaneva). She co-founded SOC (Société d’Objets Cartographiques) in 2016. The studio designed the installation CZO space at the ZKM (Museum for Art and Media, Karlsruhe) for the exhibition Critical Zones. Observatories for Earthly Politics (curated by Bruno Latour, 2020), the result of close collaboration between science and art. She has also contributed to theater research (INSIDE, Back to Earth, Où atterrir?), and co-authored the book Terra Forma, Manuel de Cartographies Potentielles (B42, 2019).