New Outer-Manhattan, End of summer, 20XX
After the monsoons of early summer (or is it late winter?), the wetlands along the coastal edge of what was central Brooklyn becomes thick with swarms of mosquitos. Public health officials issue warnings against nighttime activities in the height of mosquito season: West Nile Virus and Zika scares of the early 00s have since given way to diseases with more complicated names and symptoms.
But life goes on. The origin of “Pathogen Partying” remains a subject of urban lore, but there is a clear set of events which led to its popularly: the imposition of nightly curfews due to disease vector fear, the transformation of public parks into the territory of feral pets abandoned during the floods of last decade, and a post-millennial pursuit of a “natural high” as opposed to the pharmaceutical variety of previous generations. These events, combined with the realization that the habitat of the nightclub - blacklight, sweat, CO2 - is also the preferred habitat of The Swarm.
In darkened streets, Department of Public Health vans creep along, spraying long arcs of pesticides into clumps of cattails. On a block where street trees have now been replaced by riparian marsh grasses sprouting among crumbling sidewalks, a purple light serves as a beacon. Pathogen Parties are ad hoc affairs with revolving codenames and addresses: necessary measures to avoid DOH raids and citations for ‘reckless ecological behavior.’ Tonight, in the third floor walkup apartment, The Swarm congregates in ultraviolet. The audience has assembled and now they mingle amongst carbon-extruded ductwork: in a room, like a garden, like a nightclub, like a swamp.
Published in Pidgin, Princeton School of Architecture, 2017.
b r a i d_t h e o r y is an industrial-strength spiritual cleansing.
Riperian plant mix, industrial tubing, anthracite, carboratum, bismuth, quartz crystal.
a project by GRNASFCK for COSMO at MoMA PS1
in collaboration with Andres Jaques Architects
Published in PLOT (CUNY City College Dept of Landscape Architecture), 2016.
Internal Memorandum - Privileged and Confidential
TO: TranzKanada Corporate Shareholders
FROM: TranzKanada Corp Central Headquarters
SUBJECT: Keystone Pipeline Wildlife Migration Corridor - An Investment Opportunity!
Dear Valued Shareholders,
As you are all aware construction is underway on the Keystone Pipeline Wildlife Migration Corridor. Responding to the overwhelming concern of resource extraction operations and instability, and predicted extinctions of climate-sensitive North American mammals and birds, the Migration Corridor and its dedicated team of Habitat Relocation Officers are now prepared to unveil a comprehensive plan to assist in the resettlement of targeted species into plentiful northern territories over the next twenty-five (25) years.
As presented during last fall’s simulcast 2025 TranzKanada America North Forth! Conference, the migration corridor will utilize property easements acquired by TranzKanada Corp in the early 2000s for the construction and operation of the Keystone Oil Pipeline. This collection of pipeline easements constitute a contiguous corridor 60m wide and stretching over 2,200km from Houston, TX to Hardisty, Alberta. While property owners can rest assured no damages will come to their land as disturbance1, the second phase Keystone Wildlife Migration Corridor simply opens the easements to endangered animals previously excluded for construction worker safety.
On the coattails of biologists confirming the habitat value of the north trending open space (Johnson, et al. 2023), citing a rise of grassland dependent species such as grouse and northern cottontail rabbits, and larger mammals such as bears and marmots, the Migration Corridor will now enable targeted species to seek refuge from the perpetual heat of North America. We are confident all necessary measures are in place to tag, trace and monitor all megafauna during their assisted migration north, and a ribbon cutting is scheduled with the simultaneous release of a rehabilitated owl into the wild for March 3rd, 2026. Please watch the live broadcast at www.tranzkanada/xlwild.ca, where you can even follow your favorite wild animal journey north from the controlled climate of your own home!
Following the 95% completion of the Assisted Migration project, TranzKanada will open a turn-key 4.3 billion dollar conservation banking fund in the depopulated drylands of the central United States, no longer subject to stringent regulations of wildlife habitat preservation. TranzKanada’s proud dedication to the acceleration of fossil fuel extraction, transportation, and combustion has played a key role in the climate disruption now driving the robust expansion of this exciting new market. It is our pleasure to offer current TranzKanada shareholders the first opportunity to invest in what will be the future of climate disruption and relocation revenue streams and markets.
Please review the enclosed artist interpretation of the operational Keystone Wildlife Corridor prepared by GRNASFCK llc.
1 The vibration induced seismic events experienced during the Keystone pipeline construction were isolated incidents and all pumping stations have subsequently been inspected for pressure and regulatory compliance. TranzKanada is proud to state that we have not experienced a fatal accident since the High Pressure Gas Discharge Event (HPGDE) of 2021.
Published in Ground Up 05: Deliniations, Berkley Dept of Landscape Architecture & Environmental Planning, Spring 2016.
The flight out of La Guardia to Orlando is like the motherfucking United Nations of crying children: Babies of every race and creed, their voices forming a chorus of unintelligible desire, their families scrambling to translate. JetBlue Airways flight #299 puts of the horror of the nuclear family on full display.
Fear not: redemption is on the horizon, only a few hours away. Embedded amongst dozens of families in crisis, we are hurtling towards validation, and perhaps even some semblance of joy. Orlando International Airport proclaims it; a facsimile of Mickey Mouse greets us with open arms.
We’ve made it to the Kingdom.
from "Sunshine Eschatology", MANIFEST: A Journal of American Architecture and Urbanism, 2015.
Boston USA Perimeter Zone, Year 2XXX
[Through a false door, THE MOTHER descends the stairs]
Surveying her garden: Sheets of extruded petrochemicals (a difficult acquisition from the underground exchange) laid down upon concrete slab, the substrate for THE PLANT.
She understands THE PLANT. White nude unfurling itself into ultraviolet light, humming on telluric current. A sine-wave carpet of green in a gray space. The eighth wonder. The Lord's work. CULT-ivation. When she squints her mind, she can remember the soil, how it felt warm in her smooth hand. And so now, pulling the plastic sheeting taunt with wrinkled fingers and dispensing the nutrient mist, she wonders: How many will remember?
Once a month, the study group meets among THE PLANT, re-reading contraband pdfs of the Florentine Codex, the Communist Manifesto, Gardening for Dummies. Nodding their heads and speaking in hushed tones: Yes, yes, they say this is the pre-apocalypse. They pay rent in ammonium nitrate and protein powder.
Meanwhile, THE MOTHER passes the time painting a petrochemical orchid with a fine sable-haired brush, eyes squinted.
"Is that you, ChIA-PET?"
+ + +
For his solo exhibition at New Capital Projects, Leonardo Kaplan presents a domestic laboratory of living machines. Rococo textures of Salvia hispanica grafted to fragments scavenged from an extinct middle class, Kaplan's sprouted sculptures weld together obsessive wellness, nostalgia, and DIY technology in what is either an attempt to survive a coming apocalypse, or a shrine of submission to it. In this parallel reality, life relies on maintenance from an empathetic hand. But who is the agent?
Exhibition essay for Leonardo Kaplan, "Machines of Loving Grace" at New Capital Projects, 2016.
I interviewed Denise Scott Brown!
"Being Denise Scott Brown," LOBBY (Bartlett School of Architecture), 2016.
In the future, the Ego becomes the Eco, as our cultural and survival practices become fused with biology and technology. We look to the strategies of ancient life as a method of adaptation to the Anthropocene Epoch.
Extremophiles are nature's original metabolic organisms, flourishing in extreme conditions, utilizing unusual sources of energy including ammonia, metal ions, petrochemicals, and hydrogen gas. Extremophiles are currently being domesticated for resource extraction by the mining and gas industries. Meanwhile, within the urban environment, they remain feral and unstudied, colonizing post-industrial and contaminated sites, slowly but surely metabolizing petrochemicals and other introduced toxins.
Understood as such, extremophile microorganisms can be seen as stewards and change-agents within the industrial landscape; as well as a model for considering hyper-adaptability and site-specificity as compatible design tools within an ecologically destabilized future.
How does one thrive in a wasteland?
I Love Extremophiles in LUNCH (UVa School of Architecture), w/ GRNASFCK
Notes on Beetlejuice - LOBBY
(artwork by Luke Painter)
What is the extended history of a place that is characterized by its blankness? What is the reality of geologic time for us, who have assigned ourselves the ridiculous title of “Landscape Architects”? To understand your total world conception is but one frame of Empire? That mountains will rise and fall, seas will fill and empty, I’m standing in Wal-Mart selecting ethically-correct dish soap, what even matters? That this vastness you are projecting all of your critical theory upon, which has been deemed so fragile, has been underwater, exploded in the air, built up and broken down. That you are standing on the fucking ocean floor and meanwhile there’s a burn ban in effect because of a two year drought and you can’t even have a goddamn campfire on your goddamn camping trip, so instead you just sip whiskey and catch the obscured gestures of your companions laughing heartily in the thin and opaque air.
from "Field Transmissions from West Texas", MANIFEST: A Journal of American Architecture and Urbanism, fall 2013.