We’ve moved to a new studio in Sololaki at 5 Machabeli Street, near Freedom Square Metro. Our Narikala Ridge forest project is a 10-minute walk from the studio, via the historic Betlemi Stairs. A huge thanks to artist and designer Elene Pichkhadze who managed the studio renovation and move.
Ruderal is featured in the April 2023 issue of Landscape Architecture Magazine! Jessica Bridger wrote the story, with photos by George Kolbaia. The article paywall is down for World Landscape Architecture Month—just add your name and email for access.
ROOTS, SEEDS, SHOOTS, and BRANCHES of ORTHODOX EASTER IN GEORGIA
Easter is coming—and with it comes a suite of symbolic roots, seeds, and branches seen on the streets. The celebration begins with Palm Sunday, which is called Bzoba/ბზობა, after the Bza/boxwood, a local palm substitute. Vendors are selling Endro/ენდრო, the roots of Rubia tinctorum, used to dye easter eggs dark red, and wheat seeds for Jejili/ჯეჯელი, the wheatgrass that surrounds the eggs on a typical platter, all served with Paska/პასკა, a tall, brioche-like cake, with a candle in the center.
BETANIA FOREST GARDEN: WORK IN PROGRESS
We’ve been busy installing a garden for the Flora Forma Firma House in Betania, a mountain settlement near the climate resort of Korjori. The project includes a Miyawaki Tiny Forest with trees from a local grower in Didi Toneti, a village near Betania. George Kolbaia and Elene Gomelauri are documenting the project, starting with initial sketches and tree selection at Didi Toneti, and following installation and the evolution over the seasons.
Ruderal welcomes new designers Anuki Mdinaradze and Nino Ivandize. Both bring a wealth of experience in municipal and open space planning projects in Georgia.
NEW POSTS ON THE SUBSTACK
» On it Flows: An overview of the conception, design, and realization of Arsenal Oasis, and how the place continues to take form as an open urban and ecological system. The post is the first in the series #takingform, essays on how our projects take form in the studio and field.
» Tracing Trails in Kakheti: Luka Tavzarishvili describes our work creating a trail system in the forest surrounding Shuamta Monastery using open source tools.
» Georgian Alpinism’s Urban Roots: in “Mountain Microcosm” Ana Petriashvili leads a tour of the urban climbing spots in Tbilisi that were central to the formation of Georgian Alpine culture.
» Local Heroes: We are gathering stories of environmental optimism, perseverance, and community-building in Georgia and the region. In “Uncovering the Hidden Rivers of Tbilisi,” Sarah interviewed Timothy Merkel, the explorer, and author of the Rivers of Tbilisi Instagram account, and in “From Garage to Greenhouse” she spoke with Data Tsintsadze, creator of Data’s Garden, a community and media center in Rustavi, about his work in environmental activism and future plans for his home town.