Landscape Urbanist (Architectural Association)
Earth Scientist (National Autonomous University of Mexico)


Elena is a seminar tutor for Histories and Theories and Policy Design at the Landscape Urbanism MSc and MArch programme at the Architectural Association. Her work focuses on the verticality of territories, its imaginaries, epistemologies, and disciplinarian tensions in relationship to contemporary design praxis. She also conducts workshops situated in the interstices between soil sciences, collaborative ethnography, its imaginaries and materialities in site specific practices in collaboration with UK Landscape Design institutions. She is a research fellow at the Groundlab Research Residency at the Architectural Association, where she has been conducting semi quantitative and qualitative studies of site-specific projects in Mexico, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay, and the UK in collaboration with the British Geological Survey, the University College of London, and the British Council. She has taught in the Mexico Visiting School at the AA, at the Royal College of Art, and at the National Autonomous University of Mexico.


Her work is also situated alongside community approaches to connect with the community and radical forms of resistance through soil and land management. These collaborations are extended within London, South East Wales, and the periphery of Mexico City. The collaborations unfold as cartographies, archives, and other forms of media.


_elenaluciano






Soil Health Clinic London

Soil and landscape strategy for Patlachique common lands

Architectural Association Landscape Urbanism tutor

Royal College of Art Environmental Architecture studio tutor

Decentralised Water Solutions for Mexico City and its Metropolitan Area

Field Office Workshop 1

Infográficos de campamentos en riesgo en Chile

Just Transition: the (Un)intended consequences of Greening


Soil Health Clinic


2021 - Ongoing
Design and implementation of website archive for a Community Soil Health Clinic in London. The clinic is an initiative of land workers and soil entusiast to provide affordable and free soil testing and the faccilities to collectively curate and share the knowledge about soils


Soil and landscape survey for ecological succession in Patlachique common lands


January 2024 - Ongoing
Sierra de Patlachique
Estado de México, México
for Abrahán Rodríguez Buendía and CONABIO


The common lands in the Patlachique mountain have undergone a series of afforetation projects based on short term initiatives from government initiatives that have imposed foreign trends on vegetation structures. The current project consists on a collective design of an ecological succession for Texcoco watershed in Mexico City metropolitan area, articulating small crom rotation, terrain stability, and water and soil retention. The project unfolds into a 25 year plan for the reintroduction of native vegetation and terracing in collaboration with the local communities administering these lands and the National Comission for Biodiversity in Mexico (CONABIO).

MSc and MArch Landscape Urbanism Architectural Association graduate tutor


2021 - Ongoing

Landscape Urbanism at the Architectural Association. 

Tutor of master students for Histories and Theories Seminar, Policy Design Seminar and other technical tutorials through group and personal sessions to develop critical and creative written and design pieces.  Her work focuses on the verticality of territories, its imaginaries, epistemologies, and disciplinarian tensions in relationship to contemporary design praxis. She also conducts workshops situated in the interstices between soil sciences, collaborative ethnography, its imaginaries and materialities in site specific practices.

    Visit to Tate Modern to explore the work of Denis Cosgrove on ideology in the picturesque British landscape paintings for the Histories and Theories Seminar.
    Material exploration of the soils of Dorset, Hooke  Park.
    Soil microscope visualisations with segment anything (SAM) analysis.

    Environmental Architecture Studio tutor at the Royal College of Art


    2022 - 2023

    Associate lecturer at the Royal College of Art in the Environmental Architecture MA programme.


    Her studio work unfolds geology and its encounters with soil and water through visualisations, archival curatorship, and representation of the multiple scales involved in the creation and becoming of the agricultural landscapes of the Punjab.
    https://2023.rca.ac.uk/programmes/environmental-architecture-rs5-1yr/
    https://www.rca.ac.uk/study/programme-finder/environmental-architecture-ma/rs5-1000-rivers/  


      Credit: Christie Swallow at the Royal College of Art. 1:1 soil porosity/tortuosity and infrastructural colonial model in the Punjab.

      Field Office Workshop 1


      October 2023 
      London

      The workshop attracted over 250 applications, from which 50 participants joined in person and 50 joined online. Participants joined from 10 countries, 20 universities, and 15 independent practices. Through a combination of lectures, site visits, workshops, and panel discussions, participants explored three questions: firstly, how projects create equitable and meaningful engagements with communities; secondly, how data that is collected and generated can be made accessible to communities that are part of sites; and thirdly, how study and design of a site/project, such as Sayes Court, can be distributed across a wider area.

      https://fieldofficeworkshops.org/workshop-01/



        Decentralised Water Solutions for Mexico City and its Metropolitan Area


        2020-2022
        Groundlab, British Geological Survey, Centre for Advanced Spatial Analyisis.
        Mexico City’s Metropolitan Area




          Infográficos Campamentos en riesgo en Chile


        • 2022-2023
        • AA Groundlab Residency , Ministerio de Vivienda y Urbanismo de Chile
        • Chile


        Groundlab

              Atlas de asentamientos informales en riesgo en Chile

        2021 - 2022
        AA Groundlab Residency, Ministerio de Vivienda y Urbanismo de Chile
        Chile

          Development of the methodology for environmental risk for informal settlements in Chile.


              Just Transition: The (Un) Intended Consequences of Greening

        2018 - 2019
        AA Landscape Urbanism with Rafael Martinez Caldera and Yasmina Yehia



        In the South Wales Valleys, draining coal in the past gave rise to an extractive system that fuelled Britain for decades. Their closure in the 1980s transitioned the towns to the current highest deprivation levels in the country. The project looks at how the energy transition apparatus of the UK impacts through various scales: from its global multinationals, to their greenwashed policies, and local woodlands. The framework of Just Transition is interrogated and rethought through a community forestry model for the Valleys, where challenging environmental forestry conservation empowers local voices, redesigning a new co-relationship with their landscape.