The European Landscape Week
In 2014 the European landscape week will take place in a small village in north-east Portugal - Cabreira, in the municipality of Almeida. The week will be hosted by ASTA – the socio-therapeutic association of Almeida. During the week, the surrounding rocky landscape with its hills, shrubs, the village Cabreira and its river will be the focus of our attention and care. Through observation and artistic exercises we will connect to the landscape and develop guiding motifs for its future development, working together in small thematic workshops.
The landscape week ends with a presentation of the results to the public, open lectures and a festive evening on Saturday the 26th. A book with the methodology and main results will be published in the aftermath of the landscape week.
The European Academy for the Culture of Landscape - is a platform of dialogue and research for all those interested in the topic of landscape. Every other year, PETRARCA organises a „landscape week“ with the aim of sharing the goethanistic method of landscape observation and design it has developed, and benefitting a particular location/landscape through its week-long intense observation and research work.
The aim of the landscape weeks is to train ones faculties of perception, on the basis of a qualitative and holistic methodology. The development of ones faculties of perception is the foundation for an unprejudiced and conscious relationship to landscape, which is what is necessary for engaging responsibly I developing the cultural landscapes of tomorrow.
The Socio-therapeutic association of Almeida (ASTA) is a non-profit organisation working with people with special needs, offering them a home and a place to work and lead a meaningful life. It was founded in 1998 by Maria José Dinis da Fonseca (the mother of a child with special needs), who is still the director of the association. The association started in the house of Maria José, who worked with a small group of people with special needs. Soon, this initiative gained support of the social security services. This allowed the project to grow significantly and take a place of great social significance in this rural region. Nowadays ASTA develops a number of therapeutic, social and ecological projects that benefit the residents with special needs, as well as the rural community where this project is well embedded.