BG SIMONE.png
4n.png

THE FOURTH NATURE CONCEPT

QUARTA NATUREZA
by SIMONE BACK PROCHNOW
"
Die gefährlichste Weltanschauung
ist die Weltanschauung derer,
die die Welt nie angeschaut haben.
Alexander von Humboldt
"The most dangerous worldview
is the view of those who have never
looked at the world."
“A visão de mundo mais perigosa
é a visão daqueles
que não viram o mundo”
 
IMG_2215.JPG
IMG_9208.JPG
ICMU2665.JPG

THE
FOURTH NATURE
CONCEPT

The history of man-Nature relationship over time is in fact the history of human action on Nature,

the history of our culture. The second Nature enunciated by Cicero before Christ, already spoke

of the changes made by man to meet his basic needs. Roads, plantations, changing rivers courses, made locomotion and food production possible.
This concept makes evident the existence of a first Nature, the pristine, the untouched, the kingdom

of the gods. In the Renaissance, Italians like the historicist Bonfadio, who according to researchers would be aware of the concept of Cicero, brought up the concept of a Third Nature - una Terza Natura - where the most elaborate gardens combined technique and art with the beauty of Nature, creating splendid places for the human delight.

     At this right moment, unique in the history of mankind, of environmental crisis, of pandemic,

of astonishment at our fragility and our capacity for self-destruction, my research work sought to bring together ideas and thoughts that will format what can be the FOURTH NATURE CONCEPT.

     The Fourth Nature is the one that reconnects

- it is in our cities as well as inside ourselves.

It enables a new perception through its presence. It is all about consciousness. In my doctoral thesis, two points supported the basic ideas:

first of all, it is Nature seen from a new human consciousness of self-knowledge, of unity, of
belonging and, above all, understanding that everything is connected and mutually influenced.

        The hypothesis I defend is optimistic and believes that the human being with this new conscience, devoid of self-centeredness but aware of its real creative potential can, through the precepts

of the Fourth Nature, move from the position of destructive agent of the universe, the protagonist of the Anthropocene, to the truly creative agent

of a new reality, guaranteeing its survival on the planet in a new era. Creating, transforming
and evolving, based on and allied to his true self, which is Nature itself.
     The second point: our capacity for creation is huge - coming even to match Nature's
levels. It only needs to be adjusted to be used in tune with the natural world - our
technological evolution must be positioned with the intention of reconnecting us and not
departing us from our environment. This thought is valid for any new action on the
planet, but it starts more forcefully in our cities, where our vast majority live and where the biggest problems today exist. Urban  requalification will be the key word of this newmoment, for which the foundations of the Fourth Nature will be essential - in the most different forms and intensities: understanding the city itself as one form of Nature. Our knowledge transforms Nature into a cultural landscape that can enhance or dismiss the connection we are looking for.

     This becomes easy to understand when we see it through one of Nature's important laws:polarity. It says that opposite things are in fact the same, just with different intensities. Citiesare frequently taken as the opposite of Nature, under this law, this is a false assumption.

And even more important: we humans are in the center of this polarity city/Nature, because
we transform Nature into culture. We are both. Everything that we see created or existing in

the material world was once in someone's mind. So, we are the solution, we are not the
problem! It's all about being conscious of that.
     The Fourth Nature Concept aims to bring a shift in our mindset: we can decide how we will
live from the very second we are aware of our consciousness and of what surrounds us. We
hear frequently in urban planning speeches that ´we will not see the results of what we are
designing´- I disagree with that! I want to see it now, I want to live better and happier now.
We are able to do that once we realize that we change what is outside since we change the
way we see it, that means, our inside. In this sense, solutions emerge from where the
problems are.
     What we need is a deeper perception and

a holistic view of our existence, to reach the level
of correspondence between man and environment that is necessary to have balance.
Architecture's most important basis is to understand the place where it will happen.

The Fourth Nature Concept proposes an active seeing instead of a passive reception of only
visual impressions. It's a virtuous circle - we influence the created environment as well as it
influences us back. The third millennium craves for places morphed through experiences!
When we have it, we are moved from a lethargical survival situation to a conscious proactive
action on our behalf. We evolve.

unnamed.png
1200px-ResearchGate_icon_SVG_edited.png
24200e_97934924f1784580bd18f1b7216be9d3.webp
Screen Shot 2021-10-13 at 10.22.24.png

ABOUT ME

I consider myself a permanent work in progress. We are changing at every moment, so that we can keep recreating ourselves - and this is amazing. It is kind of a mantra to me. I am always excited by discovering something new. I always enjoyed studying, knowing things that I did not know before, and now I appreciate learning from meeting people and being in places that were unknown to me until then. All this is fuel to a greater transformation and a wonderful metamorphosis that brings meaning to each day that I am here, breathing.​

For this reason, I fill my days with research, books, writings, thoughts.

And experiences.

     I was born  in south Brazil, in a five girl family, in which I am the oldest. Never resigned to what was ahead, I left the country for the first time when I was 16, for a magical experience that changed my life – I first saw snow and I first knew love.

     Since then I have lived in different countries, studied and worked in different areas, all of them important and significant to what I do today. Architecture is for me an art of addiction – I admire it, I see its faces everywhere, it is part of my life. It kind of summarizes my life journey. In fact I decided to go deep in it when I already had two degrees as well as two lovely daughters. I must say a very dynamic  journey brought me to where I am now. 

     Architecture: I am so deeply involved with it, that the boundaries have changed from buildings to urbanism, from landscape to our relation to the living world, from our existence to the future of mankind. I am in love and moved by it. It makes me a curious being and a permanent researcher.​

     In this sense, my recently finished doctoral thesis explores the way we, as conscious human beings, can change our position from villains of the Anthropocene to happy city dwellers. It all started because I see our connections as turning points in the nowadays perceptual crisis. I am optimistic about it, because I know we are the cocreators of our lives and how architecture has the power to influence it.​

     So, I keep on researching and developing the Fourth Nature Concept, once it gathers all my beliefs and makes them understandable also by my personal experience. 

     We are everything and everyone a continuum of life, in which only the perspective differs. And the perspective experienced from the inside of a human body is absolutely stunning. 

     Let's talk about it! Let' reconnect. We are all connected, we have just forgotten it.