In Portuguese, the name Mátria plays with the original word Pátria; this feminine version also alludes to motherland, but a certain kind of homeland, home to an impressive botanical park and to all its natural features. Mátria was born from a transformation movement, a connection to the essence of life, a search for naturalness and for peace. With this intention, the entrepreneurs began a journey to create a park that could bring this same energy to its visitors, one that could convey a feeling of well-being and joy through the beauty of its colorful gardens.
The place where the park was built was carefully chosen. For its creators, it was central to the idea of the park that the site had specific hilly topography, a lake, native forest and also enough free area for the implantation of the new gardens. The subtropical climate from the south of Brazil was one of the strong points for allowing the inclusion of several plants that tolerate lower temperatures, something quite unusual for Brazilian tropical gardens.
The particular site characteristics were decisive for the project’s design and here plays a leading role. The natural terrain attributes informed the park’s overall distribution; each theme garden, its paths and flowerbeds, was designed to fit in with the landforms. Thus, when walking through the park, visitors can discover the created landscape organized in layers that merge with the natural landscape.
From the careful reading of the terrain, natural characteristics were identified as the ones that should remain as strong structuring elements of the entire project. On a larger scale, the topography lines shaped the paths, and thus the large lake was defined as a central component for the park, the wetland area was kept as natural gardens and the preserved tropical forest was included in the visitors’ route. On the smaller scale, special characteristics from specific points were identified that helped to shape the vocation of each theme garden.
As from the study of the native flora, different plants were chosen that could integrate the garden composition as a whole, as well as the additional afforestation proposed that was primarily elaborated with native plants. This was perceived as an opportunity to showcase native species in varied compositions and further develop the sense for its protection. Among those, some still little known by the great public, like the incredible and endemic Gunnera manicata.
In Matria Park, time is an ally. Here the natural cycles are used to enrich the visitors’ experience. As it is also a flower park, it was natural that it displayed flowers all year round, and for that, the compositions include different species that flourish in complementary times. Besides, it was a design choice to present visitors with a particular aesthetic, one that accepts life’s natural cycles, that accepts impermanence as a feature. Drying flowers, leaves in transformation, all is kept as a way to show there is beauty in aging and being reborn at each season. More than only planning, it also takes sensitivity to present the visitor with the real beauty of the natural world. The contrast between distinct plants, the ones starting to bloom and the ones ending, between the warm and cold shades, all happens at every moment.
The different themes for the gardens were inspired by affective memories, the art universe and the botanical world itself. The Rose Garden takes some of us back to childhood and still awakens the memories of many visitors. The sinuous lines that make up the Gentle Garden, the Purple Garden and the Gradient Garden rest on the site like brushstrokes on a large canvas. Some gardens clearly highlight a desire to exacerbate the presence of specific plants, such as the Magnolias Garden and the Cherry Tree Path, others present a composition of plants with a strong structure and sculptural forms such as Agaves and Aloes. In the Wind Garden, different types of pennisetum grass sway in the wind in a subtle dance.
Special elements were included to make this a more dynamic experience, creating different atmospheres and further developing the park identity. It includes a 120 meters long natural tunnel, covered by a gradient of white and lilac Wisterias; the Displacement Sculpture, made with earth from the ground itself; the swings Balanço Tempo as an invitation to relax and other surprises among the vegetation.
Mátria’s gardens were designed for well-being, joy and connection with the best we have: nature as art. Mátria is a dynamic project, which will never stop changing, as it has the greatest of all allies to fulfill its purpose: life.
Architecture offices involved in the design:
Location: RS-235, Km 68 – São Francisco de Paula, Rio Grande do Sul, CEP 95400-000
Design year: 2019
Year Completed: 2021