Thanks go to my old mate Rob for bringing this to my attention.
Throughout May, Londoners can participate in Cityread, a citywide celebration of literature.
Everyone is invited to read the same book and then join together at the many events hosted throughout the city.
I love the idea of everyone in a city reading a book based in their city all at once!
Check out the Cityread London website here.
Last week I travelled to Adelaide for the annual Architecture Conference.
Despite this being my first visit to the South Australian capital, I've spent many hours studying its famous town plan at uni, and even more time applying myself to its equally famous wine in my down time.
Of course visiting somewhere 'in real life' is always a different proposition, and initial impressions of a city can be both superficial and revealing: some things the locals take for granted leap out in contrast to the visitor's home, whereas other things that stand out to the holiday-maker may mask deeper realities.
So with that not-so-subtle disclaimer, here are 10 things that I noticed in my brief time in Adelaide...
We are delighted and honoured that Studio 217 is featured in the latest edition of Habitus.
Designed by Richard Buchanan and Amalie Wright the tiny space contains library, wine cellar (yay!), piano, guest accommodation, design studio and more, all in a space smaller than two car parks.
Cast Your Vote
The Australian Institute of Landscape Architects asked for submissions from its members: have you designed Australia's Best Playground?
The 45 finalists have been shortlisted, and people's choice voting is open now.
Our Fearless Leader
Meet Daniel Bennett, AILA's National President, head of City Design and Transport at Adelaide City Council, and all-round top bloke.
Four park stories caught our eye this month:
- A new report on green infrastructure in public parks;
- A planned new linear park stretching across Singapore;
- Are dogs a forgotten stakeholder in discussions about public space; and
- The different attitudes towards public parks of different ethnic communities.
Click on the post title or here to read more.
The standout this month has got to be the gorgeous reverse graffiti mural created along the banks of the Tiber by William Kentridge.
Click on the post title or here to read about this and other public art projects.
We are thrilled to report that our friends at PHAB Architects have recently picked up two gongs for their great work on The Condensery at Toogoolawah.
Firstly, they received a Commendation at the Sunshine Coast Regional Architecture Awards, and will now progress to the Queensland State Awards.
Secondly, they took out the Grand Prix in the 2016 Dulux Colour Awards, beating out 256 other entrants from all around Australia.
Congratulations Brant and Ashley!
Even though we only had a small role, it's always fantastic to be involved in a project that saves an old building, puts it back into community use, and allows us to work with great people.
Four articles captured our attention this month.
Two described the results of research into the benefits of nature in alleviating symptoms of depression.
Two more described ways in which huge publicly accessible data about US cities have been translated into informative and visually arresting formats.
Click the article heading or here to read more.
Stretching across 11 streets, the verges of Buderim, in south-east Queensland, have been transformed into a veritable cornnucopia of fruit trees, vegies and herbs.
Last year the community produced 900 kg of bananas. 900 kilograms!
If you live in the 'zone', you can helo yourself to whatever's on offer.
Hard to believe that some councils will still order residents to rip up verge plantings...
Thanks to Brisbane News for two things:
- running a double-page story on Brisbane landscape architects and garden designers;
- including Landscapology and the Garland Garden project in the story.
My truly wonderful, generous client, Susan, and I had a great morning recently showing writer Lizzie Stafford through the garden as she prepared for the story.
So thanks are also due to both Susan and Lizzie!
You can check out this issue of the mag online here.
We've all heard arty 'soundscapes' where someone's recorded their local garbage truck reversing and overlaid it over the screech of train brakes and pigeons cooing.
Design student Akko Goldenbeld wanted to test a different idea about the sounds of his city.
He make a giant pianola roll using a 3D plan of Eindhoven, connected it to a piano keyboard, and then proceeded to 'play' the sound of the city.
Click on the play button above or view the video here.
Pritzker Prize-winning architect Zaha Hadid died overnight, aged 65.
I admit to being no huge fan of her work, but I did admire, and respect, the way she walked a no doubt lonely life as the world's only female 'starchitect'.
One of the things that is so clever about the BBC's Desert Island Discs is how it can use music to really 'get inside' the people we only know from their public persona.
A couple of weeks ago Zaha Hadid was the show's guest, and she spoke very movingly about her life, musical influences, and the power of architecture.
I'll let others write about her architectural legacy, but for me, the music tells its own tale, as art often does.
Listen to the episode here.
Favourite map finds this month:
- The incredible detailed maps that record the location, extent and severity of all bomb damage in London during the Blitz. See the pictures in this story.
- This new map - also incredibly detailed - documents sites from Iceland's folk tales and places where you might spy elves. There's a push on to have a new national park declared to protect many of these sites. Read more here.
Also Known As: Four Things That Made Me Who I Am.
Also Known As: Oh Right, That Explains A Lot.
As you may know, I sit on the National Council of the Australia Institute of Landscape Architects.
The current National Council first met at the end of last year, and our newly elected President, Daniel Bennett, had a great idea: at each of our face-to-face meetings, a few of us would do a small presentation to the group. We would each have four slides, and a maximum of four minutes. There were no other rules, other than we had to somehow introduce ourselves to the group.
A fortnight ago we met again in Geelong, and my number came up.
I decided not to show any landscape-y photos and not to talk about anything landscape-y that you couldn't already find out from my website.
Click here or on the title above to see what was revealed...
This fun online quiz from The Guardian will test your landscape / urban design chops: when street names and identifying labels are removed, can you identify the park, and which city it calls home?
There's no $200, but you can pass GO and play the game here.
This month we enjoyed reading about:
- a garden landscape designed for people living independently with autism;
- the whys and wherefores about Australia's lack of deciduous trees; and
- an upcoming documentary film exploring artist-created gardens.
Click the post title to read more.
Recently SBS television's Dateline programme ran a story on a Danish 'forest kindergarten', where kids are actively encouraged to run free, play with knives, climb high, explore fallen trees and more.
The show drew a huge audience response both here in Australia and overseas.
Click here to watch the episode.
In Seattle a man has been ordered to demolish part of a home in order to keep the crazy-ass playground he's built from recycled materials in the backyard.
Read the original article here.
Earlier in the year, creative powerhouse Nicole Phillips and I had a fun day experimenting with concrete.
It will probably come as no surprise that I was keen to explore pattern and detail, and to see how different shapes and forms would interact with water.
Here's a little Instagram video of the most successful (and yes, it was made with the help of a humble egg carton).
We've just had Concrete Play Day #2, so stay tuned to see what emerges from the rubble this time 'round!
A poet who boldly takes his message to the street, and a new exhibition for a legend of sculpture.
Click the post title or here to read more about these stories on Robert Montgomery and Louise Bourgeois.
It's time again for Connect to Your Creek Week, Healthy Waterways' annual invitation for those of us in South-East Queensland to discover, explore and fall in love again with our local creeks, rivers, bays and beaches.
This year CTYCW runs from April 9 - 17, and you can dip your toe into a raft of different activities.
Too much? Sorry.
Anyhoo, if you've always wanted to learn how to make a floating wetland, spot a platypus, or more, go here to find out what's on offer near you.
From floating environmental sculptures to a river that's being loved to death; a submerged church and a ship-naming poll that's gone horribly wrong, here are more water-related stories from around the globe.
Click the heading or here to see what floated our boat this month.
Last week Amalie travelled to Geelong to attend a meeting of the AILA National Council.
Here's what she did when not in the meeting... highlights from 1.5 days in Geelong and 1.5 days in Melbourne!
Click here or on the title to get started.
We were thrilled to have Garland Garden reviewed for Landscape Architecture Australia by Margie Fraser. Last week the story also appeared on ArchitectureAU.
Click here to see and read the article.
The garden was also featured here on ninemsn homes.
In Connecticut, local authorities and legislators consider taxes on plastic shopping bags, and other measures to fund park maintenance.
Read the original article here.
This fabulous province-wide initiative in Ontario, promotes 'green exercise' - taking a walk in nature - to help improve physical and mental health.
The pilot project, run 2013-2015, focussed on older adults, but helps a wide range of mental health associations supporting the broader community.
Stroll by the Mood Walks website here.
CABE, the UK's Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment, has contributed to this new guide for communities, Design in Neighbourhood Planning.
It can be used with or without the involvement of design professionals, and explains a range of urban design and placemaking terms clearly, without jargon, and with illustrative examples and case studies.
Read the document here.
Not simply a kick-ass name, this wonderful renovation by Liddicoat & Goldhill takes a dowdy cluster of 18th century farm buildings and transforms them into an inventive, environmentally conscious home that screams "Please! Come and live with me forever!"
If your jealousy will bear it, more pictures here.
Jennifer Forbes recently completed a project with Fairmont Hotels, producing this lovely infographic guide to some of the best Botanic Gardens in the world.
The beautifully illustrated snapshot travels from Kew to Singapore to Kirstenbosch, and includes just the right amount of info about each place.
See the overall infographic here.
Hold your phone up to the sky and this brilliant and beautiful app tells you which constellations are above, day or night.
You can also track satellites and get automatic notifications when the International Space Station is passing overhead.
I know everyone loves a freebie, but pay the couple of bucks, it's worth it!
Yale and Columbia Universities have lead the research underpinning the 2016 Environmental Performance Index.
Now in its 15th year, the EPI provides "a global view of environmental performance and country by country metrics to inform decision-making".
Of the 180 countries ranked, Australia comes in at 13.
Click to read more, and access the data.
Welcome Friends, to our collection of landscape musings, discoveries and curiosities.
In 2015 we brought you a fortnightly Garden Alphabet - you can catch up on the series below.
This year the blog will be a continually updated compilation of Landscapology project news, events and articles, plus links to other stories we found informative or delightful.
Topics covered will include gardens, landscape, water, public art, architecture, books and competitions.
This page is also the portal into all our cyber hangouts. Drop by our Instagram, Twitter or Pinterest feeds and see what appeals.
We'd love you to stay in touch, so please head to the bottom of the page and sign up so you can receive our monthly updates.
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26 Weeks of Garden Alphabet - Catch Up
Quote of the day, courtesy the Antiques Roadshow: "...and are you a collector of truncheons?"
Listening (& dancing)
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