The ecological question is not new. Over a hundred years ago, conceptual models and practices were already being developed in reaction to increasing industrialization and urbanization, which still resonate with our current ideas of sustainability. These approaches reflected not only a systematic understanding of the interactions between humans and the environment, and between nature and technology, but also the growing awareness of a modernity that is depriving itself of the basis of life.
These themes form the focus of the books Licht Luft Scheisse – Archaeologies of Sustainability and Licht Luft Scheisse – Über Natur (adocs Verlag, 2020), co-edited by Sandra Bartoli, Silvan Linden, and Florian Wüst. The publications form the outcome of a research project started in 2014 exploring an environmental history of architecture that concluded with two homonymous exhibitions curated by the trio in Berlin in 2019 at the Botanical Garden Museum and the neue Gesellschaft für bildende Kunst (nGbK). The publication Archaeologies of Sustainability in particular includes 171 contributions consisting of images, documents, texts, and artworks from the last two centuries. The project was financed by the German Federal Cultural Foundation and the Lotto Stiftung.