◀︎  Exhibitions



EXHIBITION PRESENTED FROM APRIL 24 TO SEPTEMBER 29, 2024 Inauguration Tuesday, April 23, 2024 at 7pm
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Under the direction of Antoine Picon, Director of Research at École des Ponts ParisTech and Professor at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design

Exhibition in French and English

For over three centuries, from the first public gardens of the end of the seventeeth century (such as Paris’ Tuileries and London’s Hyde Park) to contemporary urban forests, architects, engineers, landscape designers, and their sponsors have undertaken to bring nature back into our cities. The responses they provide are fundamentally intertwined with technical, social, and political concerns.

The “Urban Natures” exhibition scrutinizes the extensive, multi-faceted history of the place of nature in cities through the lenses of urban planning, public health, food systems, as well as aesthetics.

Inextricably linked to the issues of use and maintenance, every aspect of nature in urban environments underscores the interdependence between humans and plants. Through a selection of paintings, engravings, maps, books, and photographs, as well as a showcase of tools used in plant husbandry, “Urban Natures” reveals the ties that have evolved between nature and architecture, as well as the prospects of this crucial relationship.
From being marginal to being ubiquitous, the presence of plants in architecture is now on the rise, aligning with a resurgence of a “need for nature.” Serving both as potent political witnesses of their times and catalysts for new societal models, landscaping projects have the potential to save our cities amidst the onset of a new climate regime, and perhaps even to foster a new covenant between society and the botanical world.

Around the exhibition

For the 2024 Spring/Summer season, Pavillon de l’Arsenal places nature at the forefront of its exhibition spaces and urban thinking. This event forms part of a comprehensive program exploring issues relating to the living environment through various mediums and highlights, including an exhibition, a publication, professional meetings, student workshops, activities for young audiences, and more. Simultaneous with the historical, technical, social, and political investigations into the greening of cities, the exhibition aims to illustrate that nature can also serve as a restorative force for cities and their residents.
In line with the shared goal of advocating for the environmental, health, and social benefits of revegetation, Pavillon de l’Arsenal invited Merci Raymond — a collective of creative urban gardeners — to facilitate participatory workshops that are open to all; set up in a dedicated area within the exhibition space, they provide each and any of us the opportunity to reconnect with nature on the scale of one’s own urban habitat or territory.


Exhibition presented from April 24 to September 29, 2024
Under the direction of Antoine Picon, Director of Research at École des Ponts ParisTech and Professor at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design
Graphics: © deValence
© Marville/BHVP
© Yann Monel/ Wagon Landscaping
© Guillaume Bontemps / Ville de Paris
© Cédias-Musée social