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Art & the Biosphere ARNA ­ Art & Nature, Sweden

Art & the Biosphere Ambitious, that is the word I often hear when talking





about ARNA's vision. We are working in an area that

engi­neers, artists, filmmakers, designers and very many

might become a new UNESCO biosphere reserve and

people with interest in heritage.

our vision is for it to become the world's first to include the Culture dimension of sustainability in its foundation.

There has been a shift in the world in believing in the combination of the arts and a sustainable development.

The reason why we are called ambitious must be that

UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere Program has now

most people don't have a clear picture of what the arts

taken in a long term goal for all biospheres in the world to

could add to a sustainable development. With financial

include the Culture dimension as the fourth pillar of

support from Kulturbryggan we have in the project 'Art &

sustainability. In UN's new Agenda 2030, culture is for the

the Biosphere' created two very different sub projects to

first time part of the international Sustainable Deve­

explore how the Culture dimension of sustainability can

lopment Goals. It is also declared that 'no development

become the connector between the environmental,

can be sustainable without culture'.

econo­mical and social dimensions of sustainability. In the 'Green Outhouse project' our partners were within the

Yes, we are ambitious, but also experienced. We say that

public sector, through 'Länsstyrelsen Skånes naturvårds­

the new Culture dimension can become a powerful tool in

avdelning' and the architect school at Université Laval in

sustainability and biosphere reserves great places to

Quebec, Canada. The project built a toilet for a nature

create good examples in. Here in Vombsjösänkan in

reserve that in the end also included a barbecue area and

Sweden we can become the first to do so. As UNESCO

a 'outhouse art gallery'. In 'The windmill project' our

describe the aim for Man and the Biosphere Program:

partner was the NGO Hammarlunda mölleförening. During their final steps of a renovation of the old windmill,

Biosphere reserves are ‘learning places for sustainable development’.

the project lifted questions around future audiences and

They are sites for testing interdisciplinary approaches to under­

the European landscape convention, ELC. Through

standing and managing changes and interactions between social and

ARNA's international call for applications, two young

ecological systems, including conflict prevention and management of

artists were invited to create their personal interpretations

biodiversity. They are places that provides local solutions to global

of the windmill's history. The results, a sculpture and a


soundscape, is now part of the site. By focusing on creating real life things for long therm use,

Kerstin Jakobsson

many different questions have been set in the context of a sustainable development through the project. The project

Leaflet about UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere Program.

has been working from local needs and challenges but

has involved young, international artists to bring in fresh


perspectives. It has also involved many specialists as;

Art & the Biosphere ARNA ­ Art and Nature

The Culture Dimension of Sustainability ”Culture is who we are and what shapes our identity. No development

UNESCO about culture's role in a sustainable development

can be sustainable without including culture.”

"UNESCO's work promoting cultural diversity, and UNESCO’s Culture UNESCO

Conventions, are key to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development."

Background of the Culture dimension of Sustainability The Bruntland commision defined the three pillars of

"The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development marks a substantial

sustainability as environmental, economical and social

step forward for sustainable development in many fields, and

development 1987. But was this enough? No, something

particularly for culture as it is the first time that the international

was missing. 2004 is was declared in the UN­ Agenda 21

development agenda refers to culture within the framework of

for Culture that sustainable development need to have a

Sustainable Development Goals related to education, sustainable

fourth pillar, the Culture Dimension. The task to promote

cities, food security, the environment, economic growth, sustainable

Culture's role in sustainability was given to the United

consumption and production patterns, peaceful and inclusive

Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), and they describe


why; “The present canonical triangle of sustainable development ­

"From cultural heritage to cultural and creative industries, Culture is

environment, social inclusion and econo­mics ­ either doesn’t include

both an enabler and a driver of the economic, social and

culture or it is considered an instrumental element. Therefore, the

environmental dimensions of sustainable development."

Agenda 21 for culture is a tool to turn culture into a fourth pillar of sustainable development. This confirms the importance of having solid

Find out more through UNESCO's website:

and autonomous cultural policies as well as the establishment of­sustainable­

bridges to other dominions of the governance.”

development ARNA

The Culture Dimension in Agenda 2030 In September 2015 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”, with 17 ambitious, universal goals to transform our world. UNESCO ensures that the role of culture is recognized through a majority of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including those focusing on quality education, sustainable cities, the environment, economic growth, sustainable





peaceful and inclusive societies, gender equality and food security.

Art & the Biosphere Ylva van Meeningen, PhD­student, Lund University

Photo Andrew Sawyer

Ecosystem services – and their connection to culture The term ecosystem services involve the products and

is directly experienced and intuitively understood by

services which mankind gets from nature and that have

people, it might be used as a tool for communicating the

various benefits to our well­being. It got its main influence

importance of protecting different ecosystems. But in

when a research team supported by UN published a

order to do so, attention needs to be paid to

report called “The Millenium Ecosystem Assessment”

communication, the constant change of cultural values

(MEA) in 2005 regarding the different values and types of

and an open mind to how different cultural values are

uses humans can get out of nature. In MEA, ecosystem

perceived by different individuals. What is apparent is that

services are divided either into supportive, regulating,

there is a need to give a better description of what cultural

provisioning or cultural services. Whilst supportive,

services entails and what it means for practical activities.

regulating and provisioning services have an economical

The connection between cultural services and practical

value of some kind, like for an example the importance of

activities has received little attention and it would be

clean air and water, cultural services are harder to define.

desirable to improve that connection further. That would

It is not providing any direct material benefits, but its

not only improve the understanding of cultural services,

values are rather defined by the practices of different

but would have positive effects on other ecosystem

social groups and how well that is communicated

services and evidently improving the well­being of


humans as a whole.

groups. As





Ylva van Meeningen

influenced and been influenced by their surrounding environments, this connectivity has shaped people’s identity, values and perception of the world. Cultural services are therefore often defined by what values,

My name is Ylva van Meeningen and I work as a PhD student in Physical

beliefs and how different social groups perceive the world.

Geography and Ecosystem Science at Lund University in Sweden, with a

For example, a rock can simply be a rock to some, but to

main focus of interest towards ecosystem dynamics. I am also the secretary

others it can be a boundary marker, a piece of sculpture

and the environmental expert for ARNA during my spare time.

or a religious symbol depending on the person‘s beliefs or background.

Sources: Millenium Ecosystem Assesment, 2005, Ecosystems and Human Well­

Cultural services are usually divided into two groups,

Being: Synthesis. Island Press, Washington, D.C.

where one topic covers spiritual, religious, aesthetic or

Chan, K., Goldstein, J., Satterfield, T., Hannahs, N., Kikiloi, K., Naidoo, R.,

inspirational values, whilst the other topic involves

Vadeboncoeur, N., Woodside, U., (2011) Cultural services and non­use

recreational values, ecotourism, heritage and education.

values. In: Natural capital: Theory & practice of mapping ecosystem

They can be enjoyed on various scales where humans

services. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, 206­228.

like to interact, from domestic gardens to regional

Hirons, M., Comberti, C. and Dunford, R., Valuing Cultural Ecosystem

landscapes. The importance of cultural services is often

Services. Annual Review of Environment and Resources, 2016, in review.

recognized, but as they are often characterized as being

Church, A., Burgess, J. and Ravenscroft, N. (2011), Cultural services. In:

intangible and difficult to quantify they are rarely

The UK National Ecosystem Assessment Technical Report. UK National

considered in decision­making processes. However, as it

Ecosystem Assessment, UNEP­WCMC, Cambridge.

Art & the Biosphere Pia Sander, Skånes hembygdsförbund

Photo Andrew Sawyer

We are the landscape! Landscape,






landscape, both volunteers and professionals. Desired

convention, is "an area such as perceived by people, whose

positions are:

character is the result of the influence of and interaction of natural

• a sustainable development

and/or human factors".

• rich living environment • boost the local community participation in landscape

In Sweden the local heritage movement is firmly rooted in


the history of Swedish popular movements and it has an

• increase awareness of landscape value and importance

impressive infrastructure of local associations throughout

• develop a holistic view of landscape values, including

the country. Sweden also has a long and strong tradition

cultural and natural heritage, and management of these

of popular education.

• exchange knowledge and experiences.

2016 SHF, the Swedish Local Heritage Federation,

The methods to achieve this is among others a citizens '

celebrated 100 years, ”Hembygdens år”. Together with

perspective, participation in planning, co­determination

it´s 2 040 local member organisations and 450 000

and, of course, many activities, hikes and seminars where

individual members, the local heritage has been in focus

people meet and talk. A way to measure the civil dialogue

for public activities including thousands of volunteers. The

is through Arnsteins participatory ladder. It starts with

regional heritage organisation in Scania, Skånes hem­

information, the lowest degree, to consultation, dialogue,

bygdsförbund, chose the European landscape conven­

participation and finally to co­decision.

tion as a theme for 2016. Why? Simply because land­ scape relates to issues of importance for the cultural

Landscape management is ultimately about the place

heritage, such as local identity and the development of

and the people who use it. Pia Sander

local society.

Head of private office Skånes hembygdsförbund

The European landscape convention is the starting point for our project. A first step is to discuss what do we mean by landscape? How do we relate to the LANDSCAPE outside us and within us? What kind of landscape do we need and want for the future? How can local cultural heritage be part of basic structures? And how can know­ ledge within the local heritage movement contribute to a landscape where quality of life is priority? Together with our member organisations and some of the scanian municipalities, Skånes hembygdsförbund are working in a multi­year project aiming to involve more people in the dialogue and in activities concerning­ar­2016­tema­landskap/

Art & the Biosphere Anta Germane, Artist

Photo Andrew Sawyer

ODLAREN Through my project I wanted to talk about the heritage of

seen in many places around the area. The sculpture is

the windmill and its special role in the local community.

wrapped in red luminescent wire that can be seen glowing in the dark and creates a stitched line drawing of

During the residency I learned about the area, the

a horse pulling a wagon.

community effort to restore the windmill, the future plans for it and the stories of its past. Charmed by the brilliant

By using a public space I hope activate the area around

construction of the mill and its history, I developed a

the windmill, highlight it as something much more than a

concept for a sculpture presenting two horses pulling a

landmark and to interest people both in it's history and

wagon of grains. The aim is to tell a story from its history,

contemporary use. The opportunity to work with a

play with the physical space and bring attention to the site

community of inspirational people that share a common

as an active space used by the community.

goal efficiently and creatively has truly charged my creative drive. During the residency I have been thinking

The design of the sculpture is created in reference to a

about the ways in which I can give back through my work

functioning windmill. The construction implies that a

and how much can a work of art do in a rural setting. My

farmer would enter the mill with a wagon and horses. The

aim was to put heritage and community into the spotlight.

bags of grain would be then unloaded and taken upstairs.

This experience has shaped my ideas about future

Researching relevant details and imagining what a horse

projects and helped me to see and define the long term

driven wagon would have looked like, I selected a time

impact I wish for my art to have. In the project I am using

frame based on the last long term miller that worked in

the accessibility of public art as a metaphorical arrow

the space and also ran a bakery across the street. I

pointing to the windmill and saying “go here, see this,

brought in details such as the wagons used in late 19 th

learn more�.

and early 20 th century in the area, breeds of Swedish

Anta Germane

work horses that would have been common at the time and a characteristic style of a hat. By exploring the everyday use of the space, the road right passing the mill and the path a visitor would take I decided to play with the perspective. The sculpture can be seen when passing the windmill by road, it appears as horses pulling a wagon of grain upward to the windmill, however the perspective from the windmill itself places the sculpture in front of the building that used to be run as a bakery. Made from steel, the sculpture will rust and change it's

Artist Anta Germane

colour becoming closer to the iron based paint used

Latvia/United Kingdom

commonly for Swedish barns. This shade of red can be

Art & the Biosphere Ante Germane

Photos Andrew Sawyer

Art & the Biosphere John Daltiero, Artist

Photo Andrew Sawyer

Hammarlunda mölla ­ In memory of Ola and Clas On the third floor of Hammarlunda Mölla rests a central turbine that displays the monogram of one of the mill’s earliest and most prominent owners ­ Ola Håkansson. Ola’s monogram is not just a tag like the countless others that adorn the walls of Hammarlunda Mölla; the rose insignia scribed above his initials exudes emotion and hints at Ola’s human nature. I began to romaticize Ola’s life and the mill itself, and imagined what life was like for him. I’ve come to know Ola through small bits of information that the local residents have given me: He occupied the windmill from 1897­1912; he was an avid fiddler; he had a jackdaw as a pet, which lived and worked with him in the mill ­ and by worked I mean ate all of the spilled grain and got quite chubby, according to Görhan Hansson. I’ve learned other bits about him as well, but with just

My first construction is a soundscape comprised of violin tuning and songs, jackdaw chirps, footsteps, and the moving mechanisms of the windmill. To deliver that soundscape I built a speaker system that travels from one central stereo to opposite sides of the mill’s third floor. This creates the illusion that Ola and Clas are moving freely about the room using simple panning techniques and audio cues. My second construction takes the form of a permanent installation of feathers that span a jackdaw’s entire lifetime, placed in the cracks of the mill’s central turbine, which also holds Ola’s monogram and rose insignia. This creates a symbols that visually bonds Ola and Clas together. In experiencing this combination of sound and symbol one may come to better understand what life may have been like nearly one hundred years ago for the miller Ola and his jackdaw Clas. John Daltiero

those three points I believed I had enough information to bring them both back to life, so I started building.

Artist John Daltiero USA

Art & the Biosphere John Daltiero

Photos Andrew Sawyer

Art & the Biosphere Jörgen Nilsson, Länsstyrelsen Skånes naturvårdsavdelning

Klingavälsån's valley and the Vomb hollow The area around lake Vombsjön and Krankesjön, with

In the end of the 1940:ies, lake Vombsjön became a

Kävlingeån river and Klingavälsån's valley, is one of the

water source for the city and region of Malmö, and the

county's most species­rich areas. It is the variety of

lake surface was raised with a levee. Today, the road runs

habitats ranging from very dry sandy soils into lakes,

by the lake on top of the levee. For a time, the western

rivers, streams, wet peatlands and everything in between,

shore along the road was used as recreational beach with

that is creating the conditions for biodiversity. It features

car parks. Gradually, this area became less popular and

all from open pastures and meadows to semi­open tree

the parking areas grew back. After the Environmental

and bushland in to dense forests.

Protection Agency purchased the land west of the road and up against Kävlingeån, a birdwatcher observation

The source of the variation in this environment takes us

tower was built here in 2008. The area continues to

back to the end of the last Ice Age when a large "ice lake"

change, and a Green Outhouse, especially designed for

formed as the glacier ice sheet melted. Into the lake, sand

the location has been erected, together with shelters with

and fine soil (silt) was deposited this is what, today,

spaces for art and information. A new and exciting

represents the area's soil that created the conditions for

outdoor barbecue has also been built here.

the flora and how people have been able to use the area. The County Adminstrative Board's Nature Management The natural values in the area is why it today is identified

Unit is very pleased with the coopera­tion we have had

as a as a wetland site of inter­national importance, known

with ARNA, concerning Green Outhouse and for all the

as a Ramsar site, (after the city of Ramsar in Iran where

work, dedication and pride of the area that was put down

the Convention was drawn up in 1974). Large parts of the

here. To have locally engaged people and organizations

area are also designated to be parts of the EU network of

is extremely gratifying and of importance in order to

valuable habitats Natura 2000. Klingavälsåns valley is

create a living countryside. It is especially fun when

one of the county's largest nature reserve with more than

something as trivial as an outhouse, could be designed to

2000 hectares. It has a rich bird life and has a number of

become a light and beauti­ful building that blends into the

facilities for visitors such as bird towers and hides.

landscape. Being able to have such a cooperation, weaves the concrete practical needs with an artistic

Gustaf Rudebeck (1913­2005) was one of the individuals

touch, adds value for both visitors, passers­by, and for

that was most influential for protecting the area and to

those who work in the area.

describe its values. He fought against the lowering and

Jörgen Nilsson

straighting of Klingavälsån in the 1930s and 40s, and

Conservation manager

managed to stop the plans for it in the southern regions.

Deputy Head of Unit

In the beginning of the 2000:ies, he got a revenge since much of what was straightened in the creek was re­ meandered and the water was allowed to snake its way again.

Art & the Biosphere Mathieu Boucher Côté, Lecturer, Université Laval

The Green Outhouse project The idea to build an outdoor toilet in a natural reserve

From an educator point of view, this project is also of

came from an obvious need. But the resulting project, the

great interest for the knowledge exchange possibilities it



bears, as studying and witnessing the building traditions

embodied in an exchange between Swedish and

of another country is probably the best way to reflect on

Canadian culture. Through the creative process that


brought this idea to reality, this project became an

architecture students and young graduates into the

opportunity to bring forward the natural and cultural

creative process of the Green Outhouse added the

specificity of a very special place, the Avian Kingdom.

interest and questioning of a young perspective and











brought a fresh reflection on contemporary construction The pavilion was inspired by the horizontality of the

culture and practices.

landscape and the strong presence of the Swedish sky. Like in rhetoric, where a hyperbole is an exaggeration of


a situation toward the impossible, the signaletic roof of

professionals and craftsmen in both the creative and

the pavilion describes a hyperbolic paraboloid that

construction process of this small building definitively

emphasis the tension between the land and the sky of

made it an occasion for meeting and exchanging around

this valley situated between two tectonic plates. Apart


from covering the w.c. area, the incurved roof creates a

experience and the comprehensive reflections invested

sheltered resting space that can host small exhibitions

through it definitely granted a significant and specific

and open studio. The rather horizontal proportion of the

meaning to the Green Outhouse as it really was a unique

Green Outhouse also generates a new dialogue with the

opportunity for everyone involved to have a tangible input,

vertical observation tower standing beside it.

through architecture, in ARNA’s important work of linking








aspects. This



art and nature. For us, at Université Laval, it was very logical to

Mathieu Boucher Côté

collaborate on this project since we are a Canadian

M.Arch, M.Sc, MIRAC,

leading campus in term of green practices, especially at

Lecturer Université Laval








development is a very active field for both teaching and research.






organisation like us, it is essential to be engaged in cultural exchange and learning activities through tangible projects as it gives us opportunities to both, engage with communities to show examples of what is possible through built work, and collaborate on innovative ideas such as the recognition of culture into the world UNESCO

Université Laval School of Architecture

biosphere concept.­propos/presentation.html

Art & the Biosphere Mathieu Boucher Côté, Lecturer, Université Laval

Inauguration of the barbecue a windy autumn evening

A place to grill… and much more! The idea to design a place for BBQ can seem trivial, but it

place to eat, rest or sleep for people hiking on the


national trail nearby. To do this we literally extended one








architectural project.

bench of the table into a platform long enough to sleep 3 persons. To this table, we added a concrete block BBQ

To start giving shape to the project we began with the

and a second bench to complete the group.

constraints. In this case, it was the nature preserved site on the bank of Vomb lake. The 3 000m2 site also host a

Throughout the process, we tried to keep the lines of the

watching tower and the Green Outhouse, which serve as

project as simple as possible because we did not wanted

a covered rest area, toilet and exhibition space. Apart

to outstand the main attraction that is the Green

from the site constraints, the program cited the desire to

Outhouse dynamic roof. We rather wanted to discreetly

receive groups up to 15 people with disabled persons and

emphasise the presence of that building by trying to

to accommodate the people camping on site for cooking

stretch the landscape. We then thought of the long and

and eating.

low form of the table as a stick insect mimicking its environment. This late inspiration influenced the details

Once the constraints are established, we nourish them

and position of the legs of both the table and the bench,

with various sources of inspiration. Here, they were

which are positioned to give movement and life to the

multiple and embodied in our cultural learning process as

bench. To us, this new creature is a playful indirect

foreigners. First, they were things we observed and

reference to the bestiary of wooden sculptures from

thought were typical for Scania such as «The Right of

Canadian surrealist artist Alfred Pellan.

Public Access» which allows to tent one night and take use of what the forests give in a respectful way. They

Finally, one of the best results of an architecture project is

were also constructions that we saw such as small

when people can easily appropriate it and it is exactly



what happened at the inauguration as many persons

construction details. Said differently, our sources of

found new uses that we had not thought of such as a

inspiration were as much cultural, formal than technical.

traditional dance stage or a rest area for ice skating.







The help of different local people were also an important influence in the design and construction process as they

Mathieu Boucher Côté

led us to the use of specific techniques and cultural

M.Arch, M.Sc, MIRAC,


Lecturer Université Laval Canada

The starting point for our formal design initiated from the simple model of picnic table that was found on site. From our inspirations and reflections on the program, we than modified the table to add other functions such as a dry

Université Laval School of Architecture­propos/presentation.html

Art & the Biosphere Photos from the Green Outhouse project

Photo ARNA

The project Art & the Biosphere was developed as a partnership between föreningen ARNA i Fågelriket, Länsstyrelsen Skånes naturvårdsavdelning, Universite' Laval in Quebec, Canada and Hammarlunda mölleförening. Many organisations, businesses and individuals in connection to The Avian Kingdom/Fågelriket also took part. A warm THANK YOU to all!

Art and the biosphere  

Presentation of the project Art & the Biosphere developed by ARNA in Sweden during 2016-17.

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