Practicing Environmental Ethics
“A lot happens to the concept of agency once nonhuman things are figured less as social constructions and more as actors, and once humans themselves are assessed not as autonomous but as vital materialities.” -Jane Bennett, Vibrant Matter: A Political Ecology of Things
Many contemporary schools of architecture assume that environmental aspirations in our discipline necessarily require a tone of gravitas, a “green” aesthetic, and a LEED certification. Do environmental conversations need to begin with “global ecological crisis” and end with technological determinism, or is there another way in? RISD Architecture understands that the best way to effectuate desperately needed environmental change is to culturally incentivize it, making it spatially provocative, and experientially engaging. Neither the alibi nor the endgame, environmental practice at RISD Architecture is the ethos of the program.
Celeste Martinez’s (M.Arch '16) thesis project that explores the environment of the US-Mexico border