May 26

Ecological Citizenship

Ecological Citizenship
Image by flickr user Venice4Sea (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Certosa Island

What does it mean to be an ecological citizen in the face of climate change? Join us on a boat ride to Certosa Island for the opening of the CitizenSHIP program series to explore our connections to the sea and to a vanishing landscape.

For centuries, Venice and its Lagoon have shaped each other. Today, with rapid sea level rise and coastal erosion threatening Venice’s future, the city’s relationship to the sea has never been more important. Join SCAPE’s Kate Orff and local scientists and activists on a walking tour of the coastal wetlands of the island of La Certosa and learn how ecological citizens in Venice and around the world are working to strengthen this endangered landscape. Following the tour, visitors will participate in an updated version of the traditional Italian “Marriage to the Sea” ceremony.

This event is now closed

The event is free but is limited to the first 50 guests who RSVP. Free transportation by boat will be provided for up to 50 guests. We will meet at 2:30p.m. at the at the Biennale Giardini entrance. The boat will leave Certosa at 4:30p.m. sharp, returning to the Giardini at around 4:45p.m. Please RSVP below by May 16.

Light refreshments will be served following the program. Please note, this program will take place outdoors, and will include a visit to the edge of a salt marsh.


Kate Orff is the Founder of SCAPE and the Director of Columbia University GSAPP’s Urban Design Program and the Center for Resilient Cities and Landscapes. Kate focuses on retooling the practice of landscape architecture relative to uncertainty of climate change and fostering social life, which she has explored through publications, activism, research, and projects. She is known for leading complex, creative, and collaborative work processes that advance broad environmental and social prerogatives. Kate was named a MacArthur Foundation Fellow in 2017.

Laura Arioldi is an Assistant Professor in Ecology at Bologna University. She received a Ph.D. in Marine Science, and was a Fulbright Research Fellow at Stanford University. Her research, which she has carried out in Italy, Australia, the U.S., and the U.K., addresses human impacts on the sustainable management, conservation and restoration of coastal and marine ecosystems.

Dr. Ido Sella ( is a marine biologist specializing on design, development, evaluation, and monitoring of urban and marine habitats. He has led onshore and offshore projects in temperate and tropical environments focusing on sustainable management of coastal infrastructure, conservation and rehabilitation of species and habitats, planning, and execution of green engineering coastal projects.

Alberto Barausse is a research fellow at the Environmental Systems Analysis Lab (LASA) research group of the Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Padova, Italy. With a background in environmental engineering and ecological modelling, he carries out research on theoretical and applied ecology as well as on human impacts on the environment, especially on coastal ecosystems. As vice-coordinator of the LIFE VIMINE project, he has worked on the demonstration of an integrated approach to protect salt marshes from erosion in the Venice lagoon.

Moulaye Niang, Peace Diouf, Matteo Toso, Alvisse Seggi, and Adriano Lurissevich are five musicians / composers based in Venice who will compose and perform a “Sensa song” for the Marriage of the Sea ceremony. Originally from Senegal and Venice, they have performed across Italy and abroad for more than 20 years as members of various groups and together.

This program is part of the mobile CitizenSHIP programming series and takes place in and around Venice.









Ecological Citizenship, 2018. Photographs © Francesca Bottazzin. Courtesy of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago.

Ecological Citizenship, 2018. Photographs © Francesca Bottazzin. Courtesy of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago.