Leviathan in the Aquarium / JAE
Journal of Architectural Education, Volume 71, Issue 2

Rania Ghosn + El Hadi Jazairy, 2017

How do we make sense of the environment at a moment when human beings have declared themselves “geographic leviathans”? To live in an epoch that is shaped by extensive environmental transformations is to be confronted with uncertainties at the scale of the planet. Paradoxically, we remain so little mobilized in part because of our failures to represent the scales of a story that is difficult both to tell and to hear. The Pacific Aquarium project appropriates the object of the aquarium to take aim at the scalar dissonance between our selfish economic worries and the expansive scales of the Earth. The project constructs the future of the ocean in relation to anthropogenic dynamics—of gyres of marine debris, deep-sea mining plumes, and ocean acidification. Thus, the miniature channels our cultural enchantment with natural history and its propensity to make universal knowledge a personal experience and attempts to reclaim environmental externalities as an intimate part of the political constituency of the Earth.

Click for more information about the Pacific Aquarium project.