GREEN TYPOLOGIES The Power of Trees
Trees have shaped our planet for around 300 million years. Their crowns are not only the most species-rich habitats in the world, but were also the preferred habitat of our early ancestors. Trees provided mankind‘s first building material, and the first primeval forests, which became coal, fueled industrialization - and catapulted humans into a new era. But precisely because we have burned up the fossil resources - often created by trees - in just a few centuries, we need them more than ever. Locally - here and now, to adapt to the new reality of a drastically changed climate. And globally, to halt and perhaps even reverse climate change.
However, trees are not simple devices, they do not offer simple instant solutions to the questions of our time. For they are among the largest, oldest and most complex living creatures on earth. They grow tremendously slowly, often need centuries to develop their full size, and thus exceed the standards of human life
Therefore, the cultural history of man, and especially the history of architecture, is characterized by a complex, often contradictory relationship with trees.
We have idolized them, feared them, built our houses from them, banned them from our cities, adorned skyscrapers with them, and destroyed thousands of square kilometers of forests centuries ago.
We need to keep this contradictory, often irritating relationship in mind, because only then can we recognize the possibilities, and seize the opportunities that need to be seized in order to create a future worth living for us and for the majority of animal and plant species. Architecture and landscape architecture play a key role in this-if we think of them from the small to the global scale.
This seminar is in preparation for the exhibition „The Power of Trees“. Students will work in small groups to conduct research, analysis, and visualization on a number of trees deemed particularly relevant. Of particular importance will be how to represent complex relationships between the tree in the ecosystem and cultural history.
The results of the study on trees will be incorporated into the exhibition, which is expected to be presented in 2025 at the TUM Museum of Architecture in the Pinakothek der Moderne.
6ECTS / 4 SWS
Munich, Room 1345
Wednesdays, 09:00 - 12:00
Prof. Ferdinand Ludwig