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CITY LANDMARKS by Eileen Schroeder

CITY LANDMARKS: WHAT THE FUTURE MAY HOLD

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The human race has ability to actualize any future it imagines. We have the power to create a future of environmental sustainability. If we do not, our world might very well appear as I have depicted in Urbs in Horto: A city in a garden of disrepair.

Urbs in Horto is the first installment in a series of magazines fold-out ads. The campaign, City Landmarks: What the future may hold, depicts American symbols of beauty, and cultural landmarks, imperiled by our disregard for the environment. The following symbols will be transformed into polluted wastelands: The Lincoln memorial, the Space Needle, the Hollywood Hills, Las Vegas’ Bellagio Hotel, the New York City skyline, and additionally the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Mount Rushmore. The campaign will resonate with citizens of different regions.

In order to enact widespread social change, we must assume responsibility for the consequences of our actions. First-world society believes that it will never see the effects of our present level of consumption because we have financial capability to shift the consequences of our actions upon those of lower socioeconomic status. City Landmarks forces those who feel immune to the consequences of wasteful behavior to imagine a place and time where they see the direct effects of their ignorance and negligence. The dichotomy presented needs no words of explanation: The emotional response is enough to force one to stop and think.

As designers, we have the power impart what we envision upon others in order to shape a more positive future. It is my hope that City Landmarks will spark discussion about environmental sustainability, incite personal reflection, and challenge present-day wasteful attitudes.