Landscapes - Winter 2015 - (Page 36)

ESSAY: THE POETRY OF PLACE MARC RYAN CuLTuRAL DIMENSIONS OF CONTEMPORARY DESIGN > FR_LP+ DIMENSIONS CuLTuRELLES Du DESIGN CONTEMPORAIN Une façon de voir et de penser spécifique au contexte est sans doute l'une des caractéristiques distinctives de l'architecture de paysage. Avec chaque projet, nous explorons les moyens de revitaliser cette force traditionnelle de notre profession en réexaminant les qualités essentielles du lieu et en cherchant la façon dont les interventions stratégiques de conception peuvent l'améliorer. Marc Ryan se penche sur les façons dont Public Works aborde cet engagement envers le design qui élabore les qualités locales. EN_ A CONTExT-SPECIFIC wAY of seeing and thinking is arguably one of the hallmarks of the discipline of landscape architecture. From genius loci to modernism to critical regionalism to new directions that are emerging today, our discipline has been continually engaged in exploring the changing relationships between existing and designed environments. From Olmsted to Church to Haag to Geuze, it has always been a contextual outlook and sensibility - regardless of formal design language - that has defined landscape practitioners. Further, it is the quality of context-specificity that defines the best works of spatial design inside and outside of our profession - think Siza's pools in Leca, Portugal, Baragan's Gardens of El Pedregal outside Mexico City, or Aalto's Saynatsalo Town Hall. At PuBLIC WORK, we share this commitment to design that is able to elaborate local qualities. With every project, we explore ways to re-vitalize this traditional strength of our profession, by re-visiting the essential qualities of place and examining how strategic design interventions can enhance these qualities. We are part of a generation of contemporary practices that naturally combine a progressive outlook with a respect and understanding of the traditional core of the profession. Conceptually and practically, we draw from a long tradition of design that fuels our work. We innovate by building upon what came before. How can we create a more enriched and engaging public experience? Deliver a project in a more strategic and coordinated way within the urban context? Find a more efficient and sustainable way to create enduring quality, or a robust material application more rooted in the tradition of a place? CREATIVE RENEWAL Innovation is not only to be found in the new, but also in the creative renewal of the most fertile ideas of our past. Before we can make departures into new territory, we look to understand past traditions, the successes and failures. Looking backwards and forwards at the same time seems intuitively in conflict, but it can produce a more rich and grounded approach. The history of our discipline is a toolbox of spatial ideas that can serve as powerful precedents, when we extract knowledge and find meaningful ways to refine and reposition it within a contemporary context. 36 LANDSCAPES PAYSAGES

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Landscapes - Winter 2015

COVER | COUVERTURE
TO BEGIN WITH | POUR COMMENCER
WRITERS | NOS RÉDACTEURS
UPFRONT | PROLOGUE
MATHIAS REEVE
Celebrating the Charter | Célébrer!
INTERVIEW | ENTREVUE
!Vámonos! to Mexico City
Folk Ensemble
Cultural Dimensions of Contemporary Design
Tzintzuntzan
Keeping the Land
HTFC
Kingston: Vintage Grace Meets Modernist Style
OPINION | OPINION
NUNAVIK + LE PLAN NORD
Metamorphous: Vancouver’s Seawall Sculpture
bREAL ART + DESIGN
JEAN LANDRY, LAST WORD
LE MOT DE LA FIN | THE LAST WORD

Landscapes - Winter 2015

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