In a Search of an Oasis

How do we respond to the current ecological issues and how much of environmental consciousness is getting to us? How can we, collectively or individually, improve the natural environment within the city of Leuven? What are the most pollution-free sites in Leuven and how to visit them?

In a Search of an Oasis” is a project created by Cultural Studies Master students Eline Dewaele, Amber Florizoone, Lucie Korbelová and Josef Terlaeken as part of the course ‘Cultural Policy’.

The Faculty of Art’s Erasmus Building is surrounded a by a “literary garden”. Amid the shrubs, trees and occasional flowers, surrounded by a sea of concrete and brick, you’ll find short poems celebrating the beauty of nature. However, the poems paint an idyllic, romanticized, and nowadays old-fashioned understanding of the relationship between human beings and nature.

Hence, we set up to create a counterweight to the “Erasmus Literary Garden” and communicate a less romantic view of nature.

In Search of an Oasis” focuses on the current ecological concerns of the city of Leuven. We have investigated various types of pollution and consequently created an ecological walk in Leuven, displaying the least and the most polluted places in order to find a little “Oasis” within the city of concrete. Moreover, next to an ecological walk that you can physically follow, our booklet contains pages on eco-poetry. This is a kind of poetry that raises awareness of the connection between nature and culture, thus shifting the boundaries between them.

By moving away, physically and metaphorically, from the romanticized idea of nature, we invite everyone to participate in the promotion and facilitation of the ecological philosophy and practice within the city of Leuven.

In search of an oasis