Chaumont-sur-Loire Garden Festival

MAAK space entered the Chaumont-sur-Loire international garden festival edition 2020 with the theme ‘’Back to Mother Earth’’. The festival is a laboratory and observatory for gardens in the future, inventing new ways to see and experience the garden. Among the 400 proposals received, MAAK space was selected to realize one of the 25 gardens of the festival, and received the ‘‘Coup de Coeur’’ (favourite of the jury) award with a garden designed to question our relationship to Mother Earth welcoming us to an initiatory promenade ‘’in the eyes of mother earth’’.

Nature is speaking

Faced with so much beauty, we seek to define the forces responsible for nature and the world. This is where the figure of Mother Earth appears, representing both infinite bounty and intransigence. We must move beyond this egocentric view, where earthworks for or against humanity, and regain our place and humility so we can understand that it is not a case of Mother Earth on one side and humans on the other, but rather of balance, a whole of which we are apart.

The Trees

This garden offers an opportunity to see through Mother Nature’s eyes and gain a new perspective. It is a long way from the fatalism that sees humanity as dependent on the earth and its generosity but rather reveals their symbiosis. The forest, thick and unlimited, represents lushness, but also the most developed and complete form of vegetation.


Passing through it, you reach a clearing in the middle where you will find an eye. This is where we hope to find the answer to our questions. This eye represents the world, reminding us that Mother Earth is made up of the whole of humanity and ecosystems where everyone plays a part. The sky also appears here, a symbol of the elevation of our conscience. Our reflection brings us back to the present and our belonging to the world.


The move to action is concretized by a crossing of borders of the garden, the domain, the country and the continent. In the manner of birds and other insects, the visitor is invited to spread seeds to diffuse this forest showing thus worthy to mother nature. Biodegradable leaves containing a few messages seeds of Betula pendula (pioneer species, extremely adaptable and resistant) will be available to visitors, ready to be spread across borders.

The main thing in there plan are the hundred Betula pendula (sponsored by Van den Berk tree nurseries). Underneath the Betula pendula there grows 2000 shady perennials in a layer of lava rock (according to a concept of Lageschaar Vaste Planten, besides sponsor of these plants).

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Other designers involved in the design of landscape: Van den Berk Boomkwekerijen, Lageschaar Vaste Planten

Project location: Chaumont-sur-Loire international garden festival

Design year: 2019

Year Built: 2020

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