Studio Roberto Rovira

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The “inherent power” of moments of collision between the built and natural world characterizes the work of landscape architecture firm Studio Roberto Rovira. Rovira founded his Miami-based studio in 2011, marrying his backgrounds in design, engineering, and fine arts in a practice driven by collaboration and experimentation.

In his Emerging Voices lecture, Rovira first introduces graphic and installation projects that demonstrate the observation, investigation, and artistry that define his firm’s work before focusing on four recent built projects. The Sky Lounge, completed in 2014, was a retrofit of a student space within a 1970s Brutalist campus building at Florida International University. Hanging nets draped with air plants fill the four-story height space, transforming a “sad” space into one that “curates public interactions” and offers a “place to recharge.”

A master plan for the Parque de los Flores in Colombia converts an abandoned coffee plantation into a botanical garden that plays on an “exaggeration of scale” and takes advantage of the natural ecology and relationship to the water. The Ecological Atlas Project, a database of ecosystems that visualizes the natural patterns of everything from wildflower seasons to bird migration patterns, applies data to design in order to revamp the tools of landscape architecture. The Wynwood Greenhouse Park represents the “emergent spirit” of Miami in a new public space with vertical green walls that adapt to the cycles of flora and fauna. Collectively these projects draw on history and ecology to create vibrant spaces that are inviting to the public while honoring their context.