Designing landscapes through walking

According to German landscape architect Henrik Schultz walking can help to intensively perceive and understand traversed space, to generate knowledge, to stimulate intuition and grasp single spatial elements as ensembles, to recognize and exchange perspectives and ideas.

Based on more than 100 experimental walks in as diverse territories as the Swiss Alps, the Scottish Highlands, Patagonia and metropolises like Berlin and London Henrik Schultz asks how we can walk to design? How can we make sure that all the prospects of walking can be operative? Are there any rules for “how to walk”? Can we learn to apply walking to the tasks of large-scale landscape design? How can the findings be transferred in order to make them applicable for large-scale landscape design?

Henrik Schultz will discuss this and more in his lecture Designing large-scale landscapes through walking on March 4th, 3 pm. in the Main Auditorium at the Aarhus School of Architecture…

…and everyone are welcome!

Gardener’s Year

All of 2013 I will be producing series from an agrarian garden, Ole’s garden, south of Aarhus.

A big source of inspiration for this yearlong project is Chech author Karel Capek (1890-1938) who in his brilliant book The Gardener’s Year (1929) writes:

You must have a garden, though it be no bigger than a pocket-handkerchief; you must have one bed at least to know what you are treading on. Then, dear friend, you will see that not even clouds are so diverse, so beautiful, and terrible as the soil under your feet.

Ole’s garden is such a garden, and Ole is such a gardener. He know’s that gardening is an opening of worlds – of worlds within worlds – beginning with the world at one’s feet.

The first series (100 m Garden Series) are already up in the Galleries.

The series will be published in ARKIPELAGET, Pamflet #7 as well as exhibited at select galleries in Denmark in 2014.

Teaching Time

Before his death in the summer of 2012 the Dutch artist Louis G. Le Roy (1924 – 2012) worked for more than thirty years on the Ecocathedral, a large structure in Mildam in the Netherlands where he piled up building materials with his bare hands in order to explore what nature can do – and what humans can do with nature – in space and time.

Le Roy viewed today’s urban surroundings as prefabricated environments in which people were observers (not participants) and thus disconnected from experiencing the flow of space and time in their everyday surroundings.

One of the main questions Le Roy set out to answer in the Ecocathedral was how to develop a naturally evolving system within such a limited urban ecosystem. Or rather, how to develop a complex set of surroundings in which time is given space and in which space is given time.

In May 2013 I will be co-runnning a workshop entitled Teaching Time for third-year students from the Aarhus School of Architecture. During this workshop we will visit and participate in the continued construction of the Ecocathedral. The workshop will be run in collaboration with Stichting Tijd (Time Foundation), which is responsible for the continued development of the Ecocathedral.

On weather I

In a highly inspiring lecture on weather architecture given by Jonathan Hill at the Aarhus School of Architecture in May 2011 it became clear to me that the best architecture has always embraced landscape and been in a continous and changing dialogue with the weather:

Using the site’s natural weather as a fertilizer it cultivates manmade weather to consider our perception of the natural and the artificial. The seasonal relations between varying weather conditions are the principal tool of building, which is endless and evolving rather than finite and fixed. As the building grows it drifts further from the needs of people, blurring the boundaries between home and garden, work and rest, inside and outside, the natural and the artificial […] So that we may inhabit a weathered home the way we do a weathered landscape.

Jonathan Hill, Immaterial Architecture, 2006 (my emphasis)