L’Enfant’s Latency: Camping the Anacostia

by Greta Ruedisueli (MLA '18)

On the one hand, there are the highly regulated, pristine, national landscapes of Washington, and on the other, there are disenfranchised landscapes left out of the planning process. This thesis considers the latter as spaces to reclaim the rights to a collective public realm. It proposes an alternative to sys- tematized maintenance by embracing spontaneous occupation, highlighting the symbiotic potential of plants and humans.

“L’Enfant’s Latency” creates an environment for temporary and voluntary camping along the Anacostia River. In opposition to the Washington Mall, this reading of a collective right to the public defines a dynamic and messy democracy.