Legends from our own lunchtimes

Friday, October 13, 2017

Cité Végétale - Thursday 12th October

One of our favourite routes to just one of our favourite bakeries is through what is called the Botanic Gardens Esplanade, a sort of forest come avenue.  When we were here in May we were astonished to see dozens of large holes being dug not quite at random yet not quite in a square grid, and we couldn’t work out what they were for.   It looked as though something was terribly amiss and we hoped that the trees were not in danger.

Five months later we have discovered that it was quite the opposite.  The Gardens and the Esplanade are celebrating their 150th anniversary this year and the local authority in it’s infinite wisdom decided that the city, rather than ponder its previous few thousand years, should consider what might become of it over the next one hundred and fifty.  To that end it created an exhibition of the work of Belgian Architect and dare I say “Futurist”, Luc Schuiten which depicts his vision of what could be for not only this city but half a dozen other major metropolis’ around the world one hundred and fifty years hence.

His drawings and the accompanying explanations are sublime, with the esplanades tree canopy in such perfect harmony with the dozens of gigantic renderings on display that one could not imagine them in a stuffy gallery.  Perhaps the most marvellous thing is that here in this ancient city, rather than constantly looking backwards we are being encouraged to grasp a positive vision of what the future could be, almost certainly will not, but thanks to the constant stream of school classes visiting, some seeds may just be being sown.

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