Elisa Silva

Design Critic in Landscape Architecture

Elisa Silva is director and founder of Enlace Arquitectura established in Caracas Venezuela 2007. Projects focus on raising awareness of spatial inequality and the urban environment through public space, the integration of informal settlements and community engagement in rural landscapes. Public space interventions in informal settlements through didactic and participatory methodologies are central to Enlace´s practice and were recently featured in the XX Architecture and Urbanism Biennial in Valparaiso Chile 2017. The office has also been recognized in other international design awards such as the XXII Ibero-American Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism for the Sabana Grande Pavement Project in Caracas Venezuela 2012; and the Walk 21 Award for Puerto Encantado Higuerote Venezuela 2015.

Elisa´s research interests include the relationship of informal settlement growth with housing policy and land-use regulation, the role of public space in urban integration and the adaptation of rural communities and landscapes. In 2017, she was awarded a Graham Foundation Grant for the publication Pure Space: Expanding the Public Sphere through Public Space Transformations in Latin American Informal Settlements, (Actar, 2019). She has co-authored Pro-Inclusion: Practical tools for the integral development of Latin American cities (CAF Development Bank of Latin America, 2016) presented at Habitat III in Quito; and CABA Cartography of the Caracas Barrios 1966-2014 (Fundación Espacio 2015), widely recognized as a seminal contribution to the city´s urban history records. Elisa was awarded the Wheelwright Fellowship in 2011 and the Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome in 2005. She is a board member of the Asian School of Architecture and Design Innovations in Cochin India and the Biñ Yu Initiative in Mexico; and a consultant to UN Habitat and CAF. Elisa teaches at the Simon Bolívar University in Caracas Venezuela and has taught workshops at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya in Barcelona Spain and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Perú in Lima Peru. She grew up between St. Louis and Venezuela, and is a graduate of the GSD 2002.