Robin Winogrond, “In Search of Geographical Re-enchantment”

Photograph of a vast blue sky above a round water foundation, with someone crouched taking photos to the right.

Registration Information
The GSD’s Fall 2021 Public Programs are all virtual and require registration.

Click here to join Robin Winogrond, “In Search of Geographical Re-enchantment”.

The event will also be live streamed to the Harvard GSD YouTube page. Only viewers who are attending the lecture via Zoom will be able to submit questions for the Q+A. If you would like to submit questions for the speaker in advance of the event, please click here.

Live captioning will be provided during this event. 

Event Description

“Unruly places have the power to disrupt our expectations, of stimulating and reshaping our geographical imagination, to reenchant geography…Space sounds modern in a way that place doesn’t. The reaction of modern societies has been to straighten and rationalize…the oddity of place.”
Alistair Bonnet, Unruly Places

The replacement of the unique and specific with the generic is a sign of our times. Cities make no exception. In the name of the modern, new and improved, the luring richness, unexpected and uncontrolled are being standardized out of our urban landscapes. The result is often a sterile built environment with scary resemblance to architectural renderings that has little to do with the unfolding of human experience.

Robin Winogrond will show a series of her recent projects in Switzerland and Germany, most often on the urban periphery, which increasingly focus on sussing out the poetic potential of the banality of our contemporary urban landscape. What in a place engages our imagination or leaves us cold? Using a narrative approach, the projects become testing grounds to re-enchant each specific site with the power of its own inherent qualities, expressing the underestimated oddity of place that our contemporary urban landscapes contain.


Headshot of Robin Wonigrond, who stands in front of a shelf which holds many rocks. She wears glasses and a gray shirt. Robin Winogrond, landscape architect and urban designer, is co-founder of Studio Vulkan Landscape Architecture, in Zurich, Switzerland. She was partner from 2014-2020, a period in which numerous international competitions and prizes were won, most notably the recently completed Zurich Airport Park. While continuing the collaboration with Studio Vulkan, she is working independently and internationally on projects, juries, lecturing, teaching, and publishing. She is currently teaching at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.

Robin Winogrond works on a wide variety of scales and themes, with a focus on built works as well as large-scale open space and urban design schemes, and site-specific installations. Her work, at once atmospheric and pragmatic in nature, seeks to design but also build powerful experiences of slippery matters such as atmosphere, imagination, the psychology of social space, multifaceted identity of place, and embodied experience. Combining these with the pragmatic nature of building, the projects search to understand and interpret the diverse demands, contradictions and countervailing expectations of the contemporary landscape, especially on the increasingly banal urban periphery, using this productive tension as a driver for developing innovative and experimental design strategies that interpret the conditions of the site and its users.

Anyone requiring accessibility accommodations should contact the Public Programs Office at (617) 496-2414 or [email protected].