An Aquatic Sense of PlaceThesis & Installation


Location:Carpenter Center, Cambridge, MA/ Magdalena River, ColombiaBy: Luisa Brando
Advisor:Dilip Da Cunha
Thesis Project 
MDes Critical Conservation.Harvard University

Video Installation
+ Collage

After a 5 year research on Magdalena River, traveling up and down, across and through her, and a two year masters on Critical Conservation I placed my thoughts and conclusions on a space as an immersive installation. What the river taught me along her lines, was that she was not one single line as portrayed in maps. That this imaginary of a river as a line has led us to create political and administrative policies that have placed rivers as borders rather than connectors. This has led to a collective imagination that is now placing rivers and all the ecologies around them in danger, and accepting an idea that is based on division rather than conversion, which does not correspond to how nature operates.

This immersive installation is an invitation to re-image rivers as a multiplicity of lines and events, economies and histories. Inside a curved wall filled with tiny indexed drawings of what Colombia's conservation policies constitute as “natural”, “material” and “immaterial” heritage, 40 curtains float along a space that contains two video projections of the multiple lines that converge in Magdalena. It is an invitation to think not of Patrimony, but a matrimony between the natural, material and immaterial heritage through rivers.