Landezine

An art collective rolls out a 1,400-foot path of turf for a small town in France.

Green architecture can often be taken too literally these days, to the extent that any structure slapped with a plane of grass on a roof or a wall can be too easily equated with do-good design. As architects and landscape architects continue to tinker with the still novel concept of grafting nature directly onto architecture, it is important to look critically at the role of nature in each design that wields a carpet of grass like a badge of moral affirmation.

We had our reservations when we came across the Tapis Rouge! installation in the French village of Jaujac, for which the public art collective Gaëlle Villedary rolled out 1,400 feet of turf grass rollers to create a snaking path of organic matter cutting through streets of asphalt, cement, and stone. According to Landezine, the meandering carpet was installed in celebration of the 10th anniversary of Jaujac’s arts and nature trail programs.

Like a distilled, just-add-water version of the linear park, Tapis Rouge! prescribes a specific circulation through the town. However, its narrow path leaves much to be desired, providing little room to do much anything (only picnickers on a diet could perhaps make something of the limited space). But this seeming inadequacy of design could be seen as the merit of the project as a temporary installation; the minimal intervention modestly introduces a new understanding of the village, one that gathers existing places and spaces and connects them all for a brief duration like a string of beads on a necklace, inviting locals to explore the village anew.

Landezine.

All images via

This post originally appeared on Architizer, an Atlantic partner site.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Design

    The Problem With 'Fast-Casual Architecture'

    Washington, D.C., has a huge new waterfront development that’s fun, popular, and easy on the eyes. Is anything wrong with that?

  2. Transportation

    If You Drive Less Than 10,000 Miles a Year, You Probably Shouldn't Own a Car

    Up to one-quarter of all U.S. drivers might be better off using ride-sharing services instead.

  3. Life

    Google Announces Plan to Turn Toronto Neighborhood into Living Laboratory

    The development is the company's first foray into what it has described as "rebuilding cities from the Internet up.”

  4. Transportation

    How Seattle Bucked a National Trend and Got More People to Ride the Bus

    Three experts in three very different positions weigh in on their city’s ridership success.

  5. A woman on a bicycle drives pass a house destroyed by the earthquake that struck the southern coast of Mexico late on Thursday, in Ixtaltepec, Mexico.
    Environment

    Mexico Desperately Needs a Better Earthquake Alert System

    When the earth is about to move, seconds are precious.