Therme Art presents a live panel discussion on urban wellbeing
A panel including Stefano Boeri, Jane Withers, Suhair Khan and others discussed urban wellbeing during a panel discussion hosted by Therme Art and Dezeen.
The panel was the fifth instalment of Therme Art's new initiative Wellbeing Culture Forum, a programme of online discussions that explore the role of culture, art, design and architecture in promoting health and wellbeing in urban populations.
Therme Art is the creative arm of the Therme Group and provides artworks to its spas and resorts around the world.
Titled Human Cities – Fostering a Systems-Approach to Urban Life, the session explored how to maintain the health and wellbeing of urban populations.
The panel argued that the coronavirus pandemic has opened up the conversation around wellbeing and highlighted existing social inequalities that affect the health of urban communities.
With lockdown confining many people to homes with no access to green spaces, the importance of nature has become increasingly urgent, the panel agreed, arguing that an increased reliance on technology is leading people to seek out
The panellists also exploring the role of creativity, culture and nutrition in urban health and how to improve the health of the city's inhabitants and its green spaces, while also preserving cities as places of prosperity.
Moderated by Therme Art's CEO and curator Mikolaj Sekutowicz, the panel responded to the recent publication of the Therme Group's green paper Human Cities: Increasing Urban Wellbeing, an open-source report examining how humans can thrive in urban environments.
The panel featured architect and urban planner Stefano Boeri who is known for his building and city designs that are covered in plants and trees, such as a vertical forest city in China designed to combat air pollution and a plan for a Mexican smart city covered in 7.5 million plants.
Also on the panel was chief executive of wellbeing consulting firm Well Intelligence Anni Hood, and Suhair Khan, project lead for Google Arts and Culture in London.
Ben Rogers, director of the Centre for London, and Jörg Spitz, founder and executive director of the Academy for Human Medicine and Evolutionary Health, also joined the discussion.
In addition, the panel was joined by Danny Sriskandarajah, chief executive of the British charity Oxfam, and design consultant, curator and writer Jane Withers.
The talk was the latest in a series of public discussions organised by Therme Art, the first of which featured Hans Ulrich Obrist, Frida Escobedo, Stefano Boeri and more and explored the relationship between art and architecture.
The second iteration featured a discussion about the value of live cultural events amidst global unrest with Es Devlin, Zoé Whitely and Marc Spiegler among others.
The third session featured a discussion with Sonia Boyce, Elvira Dyangani Ose and David Kohn and others about the role of art and culture in the built environment.
The fourth instalment of the series featured a talk with Maria Adebowale-Schwarte, Jayden Ali and Ken Arnold and others on how to design healthy and happy cities.