Romy Hecht, “The Green Ideal: Botanical Practices and the Creation of Santiago’s Civic Landscape”

At 1794 Etching of a view of a wall and mountains in Santiago de Chile

Fernando Brambila, Vista de la Ciudad de Santiago de Chile con parte del Tajamar del Río Mapocho desde la Quinta Alegre (1794) © Museo Histórico Nacional de Chile

Romy Hecht is a Professor at the School of Architecture, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC), where she gives courses and research seminars on historical narratives and design theories of nineteenth- and twentieth-century landscapes. She holds a Ph.D. in History and Theory of Architecture from Princeton University and an M. Arch and professional degree in architecture from the PUC. She has been a Visiting Professor in the Department of Landscape Architecture at the GSD (2012), in the Ph.D in Architecture program at the Universidad Nacional de Rosario in Argentina (2016) and in the Master in Architecture program at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Lima (2017). She is also a former fellow at Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, Washington, D.C. (2015, 2017–2018).

As an author and recipient of National Grants and research fellowships, Hecht has developed a fundamental task in the studies of landscape architecture in Latin America. She has focused on constructing a comprehensive history of Chile’s landscape projects, particularly in post-independence Santiago, describing how landscape strategies have been shaped by a dynamic relationship between botanical practices, political decisions and economic circumstances giving form to an arboreal culture that has transformed the city.

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