Responding radically to the twin climate and biodiversity crises, atelier Some Kind of Nature attends to the entangled fate of organisms. We acknowledge the impact of homo sapiens on the physical, chemical, and biological systems of the planet and engage with contemporary discourses around the Anthropocene. Interdisciplinarity is at the core of our pedagogy and approach; SKN staff are architects, landscape architects, and social scientists. SKN is for students of landscape and architecture; our final year masters’ students can work in interdisciplinary collaboration. We extend our collaborative ethos to more-than-human actors, redefining our engagement with the environment as a multi-voiced or polyphonic narrative. By de-centering humans we act in humanity’s best interests. We are, after all, biological too.
This year we generated interspecies empathy; studying the unfathomable and tiny life forms which live on brick or inside moss patches with scientists and artists. Our focus was on the area of Bradford in East Manchester. Bradford Pit was the richest coal mine in Manchester and played a key role in the development of the industrial revolution. The threat of subsidence led to its closure in 1968, and the associated ironworks closed in 1986. Now adjacent to the Ethiad Stadium; our territory carries the marks of entangled human and more-than-human histories. With a future promising dense apartments, will there be space for those (humans and non-humans) who are not the target market? SKN asks our students to consider what our world could look like if we decentred humans and designed for all life.