Unusual Landscape Design Principles

Posted on the May 21st, 2013 under Friends by Laurence Pharoah

Unusual Landscape Design Principles

The science of landscape design has really only been around as a study in western culture for perhaps three hundred years and during that time we have looked for those principles in design that are aesthetically pleasing. However modern technology has allowed for some amazing principles to be reflected in landscape architecture. There is one garden in particular to which I am referring and that is The Garden of Cosmic Contemplation in Scotland.

 

There’s a Black Hole in my Garden!

 

Charles Jencks is a revolutionary landscape Architect; through a long and distinguished career he has created some mind-boggling landscapes. At his private residence Portrack House, near Dumfries in Scotland Charles Jencks has created a vision of wonder in a garden. Dedicated to his late wife Maggie Keswick Jencks, 30 acres of Scottish lowlands have been formed, sculpted and raised into wondrous forms that depict our understanding of function in nature. The garden’s transformation from a typical estate garden began with their attempt to make a swimming pool for their children from a mosquito infested swamp.  The earth that was excavated now forms Snail hill, a spiralled double helix mound that allows people to walk up and down the mound without crossing paths and the swimming hole is now the estates dragon lake.

The double helix is central focus to Charles Jencks work and in many ways is representational of Maggies fight with cancer perhaps most touchingly embodied in The DNA Garden where six square gardens each represent a cell and in the centre of each is a sculpture depicting each of the senses – Sight, smell, hearing, touch, taste and intuition all woven with the DNA helix. Jencks speaks of the garden saying: “That it is a polemic about how cells do communicate, how they commit suicide if they don’t communicate, so it is about cancer.”

A recent addition to the garden is the Universal Cascade, reminiscent of cascade features found in the grand gardens of renaissance Italy and France. The Universal Cascade is a representation of the emergence of the universe from the quantum foam and the journey beyond the speed of light to the manifesting branches of evolution with leaps all the way up the evolutionary scale to the present moment. 13.5 billion years of evolution traversable in a recommended two hours.

Charles Jencks recently celebrated the installation of a functional train bridge on his estate, one he designed in close collaboration with Scotland’s Network Rail. Charles said that the inclusion of a fully functional rail line  elevated his garden to the fourth kind of nature; the industrial garden. Cicero, the Roman philosopher, spoke of two kinds of nature – Wilderness Nature, being the wild untamed and untouched nature. He also described Ordered Nature, being land turned to the uses of production and food. Later during the renaissance the Italians spoke of a third kind of nature, Garden Nature which is the first two types of nature improved by the incorporation of art. Charles Jencks has created a fourth kind of Nature that incorporates all of these elements with industrialisation in a harmonious way.

For your more down to earth  landscaping in Brisbane needs please contact us http://www.mylandscapedesign.com.au/

Thank you for reading.

Jamie Grant

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Unusual Landscape Design Principles
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Unusual Landscape Design Principles
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The science of landscape design has really only been around as a study in western culture for perhaps three hundred years and during that time we have looked for those principles in design that are aesthetically pleasing.
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