In July 2003, in collaboration with the Bordeaux-Nord Social and Cultural Centre and volunteer, we set up a temporary garden on a wasteland in the neighbourhood, following an pedagogical action with teenagers on local urban evolutions.
A few months later, under the impulse of this demonstrative and manifest action, a collective composed of associations and inhabitants of the neighbourhood was formed to propose to the city of Bordeaux a permanent garden project on this land.
We accompanied the collective in the writing and conception of a shared garden project, as well as in the animation of the internal dialogue and the production of texts and visuals.
The City of Bordeaux, initially reluctant to this initiative (the land was to be sold to a private developer), finally, from 2005, supported and carried the project.
One of the principles of the garden design wanted by the collective is to imagine its furniture and equipment (benches, tables, playground…) as unique pieces, artworks designed and built in a participative way with the help of invited artists.
This principle was initiated by the construction of a bench-sculpture called “Fleur d’utopie” (Flower of Utopia) by the Chilean mosaic artists’ collective “Punto Fuga”, hosted for the occasion in residence in Bordeaux. About 130 inhabitants, 35 young people and teenagers, 50 children from the nearby nursery school and members of the collective participated in its making.
In 2010, the city of Bordeaux launched a tender for the creation of the landscaping, the collective vegetable garden area and the playground. This study was conducted by a team composed of Céline Pétreau, architect, and Alise Meurice, Landscape architect.