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Who would have thought that printed words can be used to create a beautiful garden?

Jardin de la Connaissance

Two years ago, Berlin landscape architect Thilo Folkerts and Canadian artist Rodney LaTourelle constructed the Jardin de la Connaissance in Quebec using discarded books piled up to create seats and partitions that will eventually decompose and blend with the forest. The books are now sprouting giant mushrooms, and this year the pair introduced moss.

Jardin de la Connaissance

Jardin de la Connaissance

Jardin de la Connaissance

At first I thought the venture would be such a waste. But then I realized that what we have here is clearly the re-use of books. Here’s some information from Folkerts and LaTourelle behind the project:

The Jardin de la Connaissance was established in June 2010. Since then, the garden has been interacting with the forest. The book structures have decayed in the natural setting, but have also provided various micro-environments for a range of local creatures.

Seedlings and insects have activated the walls, carpets and benches. Mushrooms – those cultivated and those who have come by themselves – have made the garden their home. Many of the originally bright colours of the books have faded. Culture is fading back into nature.

For the third season of the Jardin de la Connaissance, the authors want to extend the garden’s transformation by applying a technique originating in recent urban culture, following a renewed sense of being active in the open spaces of the city. Sampled moss from the forest is applied onto the walls as a paint mixture, a so-called ‘moss graffiti’. While the success of actual growth is somewhat open – as with all good experiments – the cover of moss material will aesthetically expedite the slow disappearance of the garden back into the forest.

[Hat tip to Dezeen]