Debra Solomon

Multispecies Urbanism

Multispecies Urbanism
Multispecies Urbanism


For the upcoming 2021 Venice Architecture Biennial, curator Hashim Sarkis poses the increasingly relevant question, ‘How will we live together’. Het Nieuwe Instituut, the commissioning body of the Dutch pavilion, answers with 'Who is We?'. Debra Solomon – co-contributor to the Dutch pavilion – responds with an answer to both of these questions, namely ‘Multispecies Urbanism’. 

Multispecies urbanism puts forward a ‘just’ urban development on the basis of policies and practices that give priority to reciprocal interrelations between humans and more than humans. By giving primacy to the care of the ‘natural world’, multispecies urbanism de-centers humans as limited, single species and reorients towards strategies which go further than mere human strategies: diverse and fluid humans become participants in their multispecies communities. This new urban planning and design paradigm is now only beginning to take place in municipal practice, but is setup to survive the ongoing crises of democracy, planetary climate catastrophe, and uneven resource distribution.

• Debra Solomon is an artist and PhD candidate at the University of Amsterdam in the departments of Urban Planning and Designing Urban Experience. Solomon is founder of Urbaniahoeve Design Lab for Urban Agriculture, which develops park-like, public space (demonstration) food forest Amsterdam Zuidoost and Amsterdam Noord.

20:00 Welcome by Marleen Wynants
20:10 Kitchen.Table: performance by Samah Hijawi 
20:30 Multispecies Urbanism: lecture by Debra Solomon
20:50 Q&A between Debra Solomon and Olave Nduwanje, David Weber-Krebs, Ingrid Vranken & the Zoom audience
21:30 End

Kitchen.Table is an on-going research that revolves around eating and sharing food, and focuses on the movement of food cultures with people, with a specific focus on the place of the body as an archive of food memory. During this evening, Samah Hijawi invites us to collectively make a soup that we will share together while watching her performance, which weaves questions and reflections on the metaphors and analogies of food making, memory, and the histories connected to them... inspired by the pomegranate.

a collaboration of Kaaitheater and Crosstalks