Museo all´Aperto sul Carso

CARSO 2014+

The etymology of the name ‘carso’ incorporates the strong natural processes that shape the land throughout time. It also says a lot about the population’s recognition of nature’s dominant role in shaping this landscape. It is a place where ‘natural things’ impose themselves, but where man also has a role to play.

Reinforcing the relation between natural and human processes, in a relational view of the territory via a path that connects the three areas, was an idea that appeared very forcefully. This infrastructure, rooted in time by the human appropriation of the landscape itself, was to be seen not only as a connexion path, but also as an interpretative route. In another way, the circular paths that have historically functioned as a method of human appropriation would now be used as a part of the construction of new cultural, touristic, educational, and celebratory structures. From a mere road we would create a structure necessary for the harmonious coexistence of pedestrians, cyclists and traffic.

In Monte San Michele the intervention sequence was, at a preliminary stage, the requalification of the existing museum, which involved making it more contemporarily adequate, demolishing some of its parts, and creating a large square as an element central to the reorganization of the site. A second phase would consist in the organization of the trench systems through the creation of internal (in tunnels and on platforms) and external pathways. During this second phase the new, underground museum would be constructed, by removing the embankment and opening it panoramically to the surrounding land.

The new proposals for the Castelazzo belvedere were tied to the identification and characterization of an interpretative landscape pathway, running along the crest of a poldje (a large, isolated depression covered by an alluvial layer, and surrounded by a cliff wall). This pathway would be organized into two distinct parts, the first being a pathway to the quarry, related to the industrial exploitation, the area’s natural geology and its local botany. This part would end in a large space, monumental enough to house large events and solve the existent differences in elevation. In the second part, the pathway would leave the quarry context and branch out into smaller trails over the crest, capable of offering several opportunities for the contemplation of the karst landscape.

The panoramic area of the Sacrário de Redipuglia would also be separated into two parts: the access area, at a low level, and the monument’s climactic space, at the higher level. In the first area, work would focus on the management of the access points, and the recovery of the dramatic effect intended for visitors. For the second we would propose the complete redesign of the enclosure, a product of the realization that the dramatic effect of the place is now unconnected to the monument itself. In this way, changing the area’s plan and some of its elevations, as well as the removal of some trees, would be geared towards giving the monument a more appropriate organization and scale.

In short, our proposals suggested the addition of a new layer to Carso’s history. A mostly relational layer, composed of the revival of long established relations, now partially forgotten. We were not speaking of the landscape as a museum-centre but mostly of its monumental scale. A reference not to landscape as a static thing – some prehistoric artefact to be admired on a museum shelf – but to landscape as a dynamic, monumental because of its scale, history, and its sway over Man, in constant evolution. A landscape which is, in itself, a monument to everything it has influenced, and which we propose to reveal more efficiently and systematically to its new or potential users. Because it is on this awareness that the landscape depends for its present and future valuation

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