Survival Architecture and the Art of Resilience

Survival Architecture and the Art of Resilience

1024 624 Art Works for Change

Survival Architecture and the Art of Resilience

An exhibition exploring adaptable and sustainable housing in the age of climate change

Ours is a world in flux. Extreme weather events are propelling governments, cities, developers, designers and others to question our ability to confront and survive the repercussions of climate change, natural disasters and other shocks to our communities. We are just beginning to understand the implications of a climate-changing world. As we face increasingly-unpredictable environmental conditions, many of the world’s poorest residents are at risk to drought, sea level rise, and the loss of habitat that supports fishing, farming, and other livelihoods.

In order to address these challenges, we will need both emergency shelter and longer-term housing solutions for large populations. We will need to design human habitats, from houses to cities, to be flexible and adaptive, able to survive whatever Mother Nature and life throws our way.

Art Works for Change has invited visionary architects and artists to consider artistically-interpretative solutions and prototypes for survival shelter. In Survival Architecture and the Art of Resilience, science, technology, architecture, and art converge in a quest for resilience: What does it take to survive and thrive amid a changing climate?  How we can address the needs of the world’s most vulnerable citizens? Through a variety of innovative ideas — high-tech and low-tech, extravagant and affordable — the exhibition begins to address the challenges of excess heat, droughts, flooding, food insecurity, homelessness, mass violence, biological disaster, and earthquake.

Exhibition Venues

Appleton Museum of Art, Ocala, Florida | September 10 – November 13, 2016

Please contact us at: if you are interested in hosting the exhibition.

Participating Architects and Artists

Mitchell Joachim and Terreform ONE, Tomas Saraceno Studio, Mary Mattingly, Vincent Callebaut, Nathaniel Corum and Gerard Minakawa, Chris Jordan, Thomas L. Kelly, Liam Kelly, The Empowerment Plan, Phil Ross, Pedro Reyes, ZO-loft Architecture and Design, William McDonough + Partners, Achim Menges, Andrew Maynard Architects, Tina Hovsepian, Alejandro Aravena, Jenny Sabin and Eric Ellingsen Studio Lab: Jingyang Liu Leo, Kevin Jin He and Won Ryu, Peta Feng and Malgorzata Pawlowska, Davison Design: Zhou Ying and Niu Yuntao, Journeyman Pictures, IKEA Foundation and UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency)


Randy Jayne Rosenberg


The exhibition features commissioned large-scale and portable interactive architectural installations, photography, drawings and videos. It is organized in four themes, reflecting key characteristics about survival architecture:

  •         Circular — the importance of creating structures made of materials that can be used and reused indefinitely
  •         Portable — the ability to create easily moveable and nomadic dwellings
  •         Visionary — forward-thinking ideas that can radically change the way we think about shelter
  •         Resilient — structures that can adapt to adverse and dynamic circumstances

Through invention, artistic playfulness, and innovation, the participating architects and artists have explored materials, technology, culture, and social activism that reflect these four elements.

Explore the galleries below for a preview of the exhibition.