Interdisciplinary Approach to the Design of Open Space


By the end of the nineteenth century the available professional identities such as architect, engineer, gardener were perceived by many to be inadequate to social and environmental challenges of rapid urbanization. These new conditions demanded a new professional identity explicitely associated with landscape. In the US, Olmsted used the term landscape architect first in 1860, but he remained bothered with the new term. Olmsted was convinced, that adopting the mantle of the architect would bolster the new field in the eyes of the public, and mitigate against the tendency to mistake the work as being primarily concerned with plants and gardens. It would also, Olmsted argued, guard against the greater danger of landscape’s potential future „disalliance“ with architecture.

Olmsted became convinced that the range of study that was called for by increasing demands of scientific knowledge would press the new profession toward increasing reliance on specialised bodies of technical knowledge, and a resulting alienation from the fine arts and architecture.

(Charles Waldheim: Thinking landscape as urbanism, in: Thinking the contemporary landscape; Princeton Architectural Press, 2016)

Now landscape architecture as a profession and discipline is a 150 year old success story. In some places. In others not. But everywhere there is a need to cooperate with engineers, architects, scientists. Increasing challenges with urbanisation and climate change, social disparities and digital revolution forces all planning parties to work together.

Landezine LIVE explores the question of interdisciplinary collaboration considering the design of open space and invites experts to exchange experiences and views. Participants on the round table are Ana Kučan (AKKA, Biotehnical Faculty), Matej Blenkuš (Abiro, Fakulty of architecture), Jenny B. Osuldsen (Snøhetta, University of Life Sciences), Antje Stokman (Studio Urbane Landschaften, Institute of Landscape Planning and Ecology) and Martí Franch Batllori (EMF, ETSAB Barcelona). Round table is moderated by Robert Schäfer.

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