re: the form (and meaning) of the landscape film(s)

But how precisely does this experience of viewing the filmed surfaces of landscapes create meaning? And why has this form been sustained across time, geography, and medium format? To the extent to which these works rely upon, even demand, patience and curiosity from the viewer, and generally eschew overt narrational devices (such as voice-over) to direct the viewer’s attention or interpretation of the images, what knowledge do they propose to offer the viewer via the lens-based capture of landscape?…If images of landscapes are always surfaces to be penetrated in pursuit of extractable knowledge, then landscape film—and perhaps documentary cinema as a whole—might be conceived as part of the same alignment of optics and power that Macarena Gómez-Barris calls ‘the extractive view.‘…Above, this essay posed a question: what do landscapes tell us? In fact, perhaps the more relevant question would be: must landscapes tell us anything? In a historical epoch in which physical space is increasingly privatized, enclosed, and excavated—rendered unlivable, immaterial, or monetizable—what are the ethics of representing landscape, and does this activity necessitate a further exploitation of space as image, data, or form?

via ‘Theories of the Earth: Surface and Extraction in the Landscape Film‘ by Leo Goldsmith, World Records – Vol. II

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re: Fontanone dell’Acqua Paola, Trevi Fountain, Fonti dei Canali et al.,

Stefano della Bella, A rider making his horse drink from a fountain, ca. 1646, from “Diverses figures et griffonnemens,” published by Israël Henriet. [Metropolitan Museum of Art]

From the perspective of architecture history, this factor complicates both the design and experience of these structures; for it requires that the traditional cognitive scheme involving the object and the viewer be replaced by a more complex phenomenological triad consisting of architecture, water, and the body…From the washerwomen to bikini-clad tourists, we can see that fountains were scaled not only to buildings and cities but also to the movements and sensations of bodies. 17 In this light it is worth remembering that the exclusion of bodily experience from the realm of architecture is a relatively recent phenomenon.

By Anatole Tchikine  in Places Journal

re: Andrea Badoer, Karl Kasthofer, Willy Lange et al. and SOM’s Weyerhaeuser Headquarters

First, the Forests installation view at the CCA. © CCA, Montréal

Marcelo López-Dinardi reviews First, The Forests, a new exhibit at CCA. The curatorial project is “organized under four categories that provide the interpreter with a synthetic view of the complex and larger phenomenon of forestry and nature. These are: Bureaucratic Forestry, Scientific Forestry, Tropical Forestry and Economic Forestry“.

In Domus

re: landscape punk

I find myself in difficult position. I consider myself to be an anti-fascist, and yet I read many, many books concerning the British landscape – I have written a fiction collection partly about that fascination myself – and I’m aware of how these feelings I hold towards landscape dovetail with those I disagree with, and at times despise. I care deeply about wildlife and conservation – to the point where I have been accused of holding a kind of animal anti-immigration policy, because I dislike the invasive species green parakeets, signal crayfish and grey squirrels. I am increasingly being affected by the ideas of radical ecology, of the notion of hyperobjects, the bleak but often truthful output of the Dark Mountain Project, but I felt very uncomfortable to see a writer I read with great interest associated with the Dark Mountain project sink into a kind of left-wing, pro-Brexit eco-nationalism. Troubling concepts like ‘Anglarchism’ leave me cold. The whole point of the Crass-inspired anarchism I grew up with as a punk was that there were no borders and no nations. You could deeply care the environments we inhabit without having to claim ownership of them.

Over at The Quietus,  Gary Budden calls for a reweirding of the countryside & a new landscape punk.

Curious Methods: re: a “Theory of Mud”

Collage of various living and non-living actors on the mud, a study of vectors and trajectories. [Karen Lutsky and Sean Burkholder]

On the need for “grounded reports“. The difference between a Proving vs Probing praxis. Not “Methodolatry“, but perhaps a small “p“, pedagogy? Which seeks to ask/answer the “loveliest“, not the “best” questions.

Via Karen Lutsky and Sean Burkholder, over at Places Journal

re: Designing Indian Country and transculturation

If Clifford is right, and I think he is, cultural encounter with Native America occurs not in the skewed spatiality of historical or aesthetic representation, but in a contact zone that is ongoing, interactive, and actually constitutive of contemporary indigeneity…Thus, landscape architects are commissioned to design public spaces that celebrate western expansion but not the decimations that accompanied it…does the making of landscapes that reference and evoke tradition, by Indians and non-Indians alike, blot out current identity practices?

via Rod Barnett (Chair of the Graduate Program in Landscape Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis) over at Places

object – field – dyanamic – static

“absolutely brilliant lecture” by Julian Raxworthy via Brian Davis aka faslanyc, here.

Mr. Raxworthy recently completed his final PhD milestone presentation at UQ in Brisbane. The dissertation is titled Glorious failure: the landscape architect in the entropic garden
. A quote “this research, three built landscape architecture case studies that were designed and managed over time are analyzed to determine the mechanisms used to encourage novelty. Gardening is proposed as a relevant model for landscape architecture to produce more novel design outcomes that gain qualities rather than lose them over time“.

Kino Heritage Fruit Trees Project

In Seeds of an Era Long Gone for the NYT, Michael Tortorello highlighted the work of the  Kino Heritage Fruit Trees Project. The project is billed as “a search for what Tucson used to be“, an attempt to recover or re-create the Spanish Mission Era orchards and gardens of Tuscon.

Tasting History from Dena Cowan (available via Vimeo) is a short documentary on the project.