Project curated by Arch. Margherita Blonska Ciardi - Studio Artemisia

"Until now, architecture and art have often been considered as two separate disciplines. This thought followed years when more specialized branches were separating studies and research each from other. Today, when thinking about architecture, we must remember the magnificent times of the Renaissance when the greatest masterpieces were born between meetings and exchanges of different cultures, research, and arts. Architecture has always been called to incorporate artworks and recalling artists such as painters and sculptors into its construction. We must also reflect that architects were often also artists and artists were architects and that architecture, if created with creative flair, is the highest representation of art. The “Art & Architecture – I Am You” project is taking subject from the theme of Florence Biennale and proposing the exhibition of architecture and artworks of a group of artists who are connected in some way with architecture creating a strong relation between their works and the public. On this occasion Studio Artemisia of Arch. Margherita Blonska is presenting the meeting with the excellent Polish architect Dorota Szlachcic who won in London in 2023 the International Property Awards - European Property Awards and the World Property Award Laufen (public leisure building). She has received also the First Prize as the architect of 2023 from the corporation of Polish Architects SARP in the branch of public leisure building and the first European Prize International Property Award in the discipline of residential building. Dorota Szlachcic lives in Wroclaw and she is very well known already for her project of Afrykarium in Zoo of her town but this year her new realisation called Orientarium made for Zoo of Lodz was recognized in London as the best world project for public leisure area. The preparation for the Orientarium project at the Lodz Zoo in Poland began with an analysis of the entire surrounding area. Dorota is traveling a lot in Africa and Asia, diving the sea and visiting the deserts and wild forests to observe animals and their behaviors and ecosystems before projecting her biotopes which she called their “houses”. The facade of the building of Orientarium with its length of over 300m completes the surrounding environment and individually represents an example of a biotope. Today the process of species extinction is intensifying. Their natural environments have already changed so much that they will not survive there in the climate changes. This is one of the biggest problems facing the world's aquatic ecosystems. Unfortunately in the 21 st century the only safe havens where critically endangered species can survive are in the scientific and research institutions, zoos, and oceanariums with the underwater world, which represents surviving nature. The task of the designer of the Orientarium was to create a space to observe endangered species of the Southeast Asia region and to change completely the character of Zoo gardens where instead of closed animals to create a place where animals can live undisturbed in their large biotopes without being stressed by visitors. The entrance to the boxes and large lairs are masked and built with the formations of artificial rocks imitating basalts and sandstones. The choice of concrete palisade of fences, greenery on the roofs and the facade with sunshades that imitates the bamboo forest, seems to surround the landscape, giving the impression of continuity of the space. The corridors and delimitated connections are for people while open large spaces are built for endangered species. The “Art & Architecture – I Am You” project is bringing the innovative installation “The Weave” representing Dorota's Szlachcic awarded architecture of Orientarium of Lodz dedicated to her biotopes concept. In correlation with architecture, the event will exhibit artworks of a group of artists related to architecture: Karin Monschauer, interpretating the world in colour geometric infinite universes of optical art; the artworks full of light and colour by Ernest Zawada; Stephanie Holznecht who depicts the colour spaces of our thoughts and lines of emotions; Agata Machay with her nocturn mysterious landscapes dedicated to the heroes of women who were fighting for human rights; Kinga Lapot Dzierwa who presents a series of paintings dedicated to femininity and related to liberty style; Oliwia Hildebrandt who connects us with the beauty of ocean and sea depth; and Alma Sheik who introduce us to the sea treasures and beauty of nature. The artworks of artists will be presented on the other side of “The Weave” just to remember that without architecture cannot find collocation the art. Everything is connected and architecture is the fundamental art that is lived and handed down through the generations".

Arch. Margherita Blonska Ciardi

Arch. Dorota Szlachcic

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Arch. Dorota Szlachcic - Orientarium ( Łodz)

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