Exhibitions : Échappées Belles
CURATOR : NICOLAS GILSOUL
Échappées belles evokes both the stroll and the threat happily avoided.
Faced with the consequences of climate change and the proposed naming of our epoch as the Anthropocene, megalopolises, metropolises and smaller cities are engaged in adapting to ensure their survival. They are inventing, innovating and transforming the very premises of urban planning.
These “resilient” cities are transforming the damage and the risks into engines of an urban reconquest. The effects of their efforts are both local and global.
Here, the first Biennial of architecture and landscape of the Île-de-France Region is hosting a road movie with 25 stopovers. Each journey is an invitation to stroll about and an opportunity to discover both a resilience strategy and a new ally, a hero, animal or vegetable, that gardens these places.
The landscapes chosen for the garden, little-known places in the Île-de-France Region, are the result of an ecological and social healing and rehabilitation of the region’s open wounds. Quarries, sand pits, waste dumps, contaminated zones and industrial sites are healing under a fragile and fascinating watchful eye. Three major strategies are being implemented: Layering, Immersion and Forgetting.
In India, the Americas, the Middle East and Asia, the Échappées belles exhibition presents 12 complementary strategies for taking back the landscape that develop synergies extending beyond the regional scale: urban coastal erosion, rising seas, increasingly intense rain followed by harsher droughts, heatwaves, dwindling resources, collapsing biodiversity, waste management and the revolution in mobility.
Have a wonderful trip!
The first Biennial of architecture and landscape of the Île-de-France Region (in French, Biennale d’architecture et de paysage or BAP!) is a major event for the Île-de-France Region, which, since the beginning of its current mandate, has been implementing an ambitious, innovative and sustainable policy of urban planning and development focused on the integration of people, nature and cities.
As the leading metropolitan region in Europe in terms of economy and quality of life, Île-de-France must constantly reinvent itself to sustain its development, meet the expectations of its inhabitants, and enhance its attraction internationally, while ensuring the prudent management of space and resources.
From 2016 onward, the Region has been the driving force accompanying municipalities and inter-municipal organizations to boost construction of housing throughout Île-de-France. However, as even more must be built, it must be done better, through the creative development of neighborhoods where inhabitants will be delighted to live, while also fulfilling the objective of reducing our ecological impact. The will to achieve these goals is being materialized through the creation of a regional organization of 100 Districts of innovation and ecology. It is also manifested in our commitment to backing transitional urban approaches aimed at generating added value to neglected and sometimes abandoned properties. These will serve as fertile ground for future cultural projects as well as projects supporting associations and the renewed participation of the citizenry.
In 2017, the Region launched its Green Plan with the goal of bringing more nature into towns and cities and providing all inhabitants of the Île-de-France with access to green spaces within a 15-minute walk from their homes, by 2021. The plan also aims to enhance the presence of vegetation, to design and develop easily accessible green spaces and to offer a wide range of services to inhabitants.
Thanks to the momentum achieved through successful initiatives – all areas of the region are on the move and working toward a coherent agreed strategy shared with Paris – the regional authorities wished to launch a broader event whose impact would extend beyond its own borders. Thus, the Île-de-France architecture and landscape Biennial will be a space for reflexion, for the displaying and pooling of knowledge. This first edition, hosted by the exceptional site of Versailles, will also incite the public to explore the whole Île-de-France territory and to discover some remarkable architectural experiments in our Region. It will be an opportunity to highlight good practices, in Île-de-France and all over the world, with the aim of meeting the challenges of climate change and the need for innovative solutions to help us build tomorrow’s cities, around man and nature.