Manual Representing Landscape Architecture

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Mixed mediums. Site recordings inspired a box construction representing the memory of hidden energy flows revealed. Indeed, drawing can be an adventure, like heading out on vacation with a pencil. The air coming through the tiny openings in a decorative screen felt cool. Yet why was it cool? Further development of the drawing necessitated additional attention to the space and its details, and revealed a fountain beneath the screen. The air moving through the small apertures had, in fact, been cooled by the water [].

Analyzing the space at both the macro and micro scales uncovered connections between seemingly disparate design elements. Detail investigations made more lucid the relationship of the parts to the whole, and described the climatic performance of the design. In a sense, the landscape is endless; our observations are selective in that we focus on certain elements to the exclusion of others.

Designers have considerable control over how people perceive and move through the landscape. To fully understand the effect of our landscape interventions on human activity and perception, it is imperative to observe and illustrate how the eye and the body can move, pause, and proceed through space. The eye can be fooled and nature manipulated by certain devices and interventions. In summary, like the game of billiards, design involves the action and reaction of different maneuvers.

There is a consequence to every action and one must anticipate these possible, but invisible, trajectories through space. Watching and looking, we analyze and plan. A good player, like a good designer, employs a conscious strategy, while an amateur tries only to pocket one ball at a time. Despite the abundance of digital technology and the popularity of electronic media, it is encouraging to believe that drawing will never become obsolete. The quickest, simplest, and cheapest way to launch a creative journey is to begin by drawing. Elevational studies show reflected images and possible view lines.

Few professions match architecture and landscape architecture in their need for graphic vehicles with which to mediate their ideas. In practice, they require representations that are at once abstract and simplified, yet legible and communicative; this is one characteristic that distinguishes the design professions from other artistic or engineering fields. Or, to put it another way, although talented in solving spatial and formal problems, a landscape architect does not function well professionally if he or she fails to develop graphic models that communicate those ideas precisely and persuasively.

However, design communication must be seen against another background. The relationship between the client and the landscape architect strongly influences the representational vehicles that are used—and needed—to realize any project. An idea and a spade are a sufficient means of transforming the abstraction the idea for a kitchen garden into an environment the reality of a kitchen garden.

If the project is more elaborate, make a model, or even mock up the design by staking out the terrain. Realization requires clear communication, and the need for effective representations increases. The gardener Jean de La Quintinie planned and managed the extensive kitchen garden—le jardin potager—at Versailles, built during the s.

Representing Landscapes: Digital

La Quintinie used neither drawings nor models. Real, colorful, fragrant and tasty fruits and vegetables presented his ideas. Constructed on wet land ill-suited for the purpose, the garden used innovative glazing techniques to create a type of open greenhouse, and radical espalier techniques for pruning fruit trees. To some degree these were techniques used in market-oriented gardening but on a scale undreamt of by commercial gardeners. To realize these structures, La Quintinie no doubt prepared drawings, but his principal mode of communication was fruits and vegetables—and his method successfully convinced his client, Louis XIV.

The communication process and the consequent need for sophisticated means of representation become more complicated in democratic societies in which a larger group is to be included in the decision-making process. Gardens in seventeenth-century France—as well as most classical landscapes until the first public gardens in the late nineteenth century—were created under political conditions in which very few people were in command of the decisions.

Park production during this period became even more democratic, with a significantly widened user group, causing the design process to follow a convoluted road. The need for an effective means of communication, especially in the shaping of public space, became more critical as the number of the participants in the process increased.

The elm trees are still there, however. Plans for the renovation came to nothing.

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In this case, the communication between the client the citizens and the landscape architect the Director of Parks had failed. As a general rule, the need for effective graphic representation increases with the degree of complexity of the project. Factors influencing the type and number of images include: 1. The number of participants involved in the decision making. The element of more participants in the design process demands more elaborate representation in order to develop understanding and generate reactions to the proposal. If the general experience of reading drawings is limited, that situation is further underlined.

The amount of detail in the program. A strong client with clear vision, combined with legible programmatic issues, reduces the demands for conceptual representation. The level of trust in the designer. A high level of trust in the designer can reduce the need for images, at least at the conceptual stage. Needless to say, this trust involves risk on the part of the client because the designer is. Today, the designer is commonly selected by comparison with other consultants.

The criteria for such an evaluation often include price, competence, references, prior experience— and a preliminary sketch that proposes a design idea. In order to convince the potential client, the image in such a situation must be engaging and persuasive. This chapter will examine three themes in the field of representation: 1 the terrain as vehicle; 2 the site plan; and 3 the perspective. Case studies drawn from Scandinavian landscape architecture will illustrate various interrelations between the client, the designer, and the program, and also show how the site and its conditions can be used almost as a program itself.

The examples will display different representational balances between abstraction and realism, and between artistic expression and communication.

Michael Jakob, “Landscape Architecture and the ‘New Generic'”

The five factors cited above will provide the structure for examining these landscapes. A cartoon from the s shows the Director of Parks in Stockholm, Holger Blom — , pointing to a spot where he is instructing park workers to plant a large oak tree [].

Its designers explored and refined the explicit use of natural landscapes as the basis for a new garden or a park, abandoning references to the picturesque or formal idioms. Working with the natural landscape as a basis for the new parks required both strong discipline in the construction phase as well as an eye sensitive to the qualities of the place during the design phase.

Drawings were made. The level of innovation in the project. Repetition of known solutions and loyalty to established design ideas require less detailed drawings. In contrast, innovation in form, concept, material and function needs to be more thoroughly represented when taking more daring steps.

The project was then staked out in situ, with adjustments and corrections made on site and in accordance with the ideas behind the proposal. This direct method shortened the gap between the representation and the realization. The park department also utilized a technique by which the master plan and the details were immaculately developed. Instead, these design decisions were preferably made on site, using existing conditions as the skeleton for the new park. The general concept for the design was represented in the master plan, the middle scale was created on site, while the detailing was precisely determined on the drawing board: features such as hand rails, wood carvings, and pavement patterns.

Such a manner of working assumed that the parks would be constructed using in-house labor so that Holger Blom could control the execution as well as design phases. Over the years, sympathetic thinking developed between the designers and the construction teams, further reducing the need for drawings. The Parks Department worked only with its own designers, integrating the client—designer relation.

The park program, a comprehensive document Blom formulated, laid the ideological foundation for the parks and as such provided verbal instructions that gave coherence to the projects even before they were initiated. With this program Blom created a framework within which his designers operated. That the designers, client, and construction teams shared the same budget also meant that Blom could order alterations and adjustment after construction had begun—until he achieved the intended the result. This economic flexibility allowed a graphic flexibility as well.

Fredrik Magnus Piper — was one of the first professionally trained landscape gardeners in Sweden. Of noble birth, Piper shared the same birth year as Gustav III, with whom he had direct ties until the untimely assassination of the king in Abroad, Piper is known primarily for his renderings of the gardens of Stowe, Painshill, and Stourhead that have served as documents for subsequent study and restoration.

These records are striking in their quality and degree of detail, in contrast to almost all other English garden plans. Thus, the drawing not only presents but also analyses the park, depicting the relations between the principal areas of the park and showing them as the visitor would experience them at ground level. Framed picture boxes present views of the wooden timber bridge and the Palladian house. The curriculum at his former school, the Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm, was based upon Parisian formulas that included fortification design and drawing as part of his studies in civil engineering.

Piper, though, worked with pencil, ink, wash, and watercolor. Noteworthy is his way of showing relief through shading, a technique also evident in his plans of Stowe and Painshill. This technique became one of his trademarks after his return to Sweden in Upon his return to Sweden, in , Piper was appointed court surveyor and the crown entertained high hopes for him. The king was then in the midst of an intense period of work on the English landscape garden at his.

Piper studied mathematics and hydrology at Uppsala University from to Thereafter followed an education in engineering at the naval dockyards in Karlskrona. Piper was an Anglophile, especially enthusiastic about English architecture and landscape gardening and in began work for the well-known British architect William Chambers. The master plan by Piper for Drottningholm was made in It shows the existing formal garden, designed by Nicolas Tessin the Younger in , and the English landscape garden revised by Piper to the west; the two parts are joined along a knife-sharp edge, neither one interfering or even acknowledging the presence of the other.

The sight lines typical of a Piper plan also appear in this site drawing—the only gesture toward weaving the two parts together: the point de vue in the French part connects in a diagonal view with the central motif of the English park, a structure that crowns the Monument Isle. Brahelund Nya Haga , Sweden, Sketch site plan. Watercolor, wash and pencil. Relations remained frosty, however; Piper designed both the site plan and made sketches for the building program, but most of the follies, temples, and buildings were produced by other designers.

These structures marked the highest points in the terrain and were set at suitable distances from each other that coincided with important vistas and intersections. Probably taken as criticism by the king, who dismissed Piper from the project, it signalled a crack in the trust between client and designer. This could be the reason why Piper, although at the time the most qualified professional in the country, built relatively little. Piper was probably also a victim of the times. The desired publication never came to realization during his lifetime, however.

Despite this gap of two centuries, two direct parallels exist nonetheless. The first is obvious: both use the assets of the regional landscape as their point of departure.

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The second is less evident: for both, instructions for developing the site were combined with a master plan that directed the planning of the whole. Thus, each acknowledged both the abstraction of the overall plan and the reality of human experience on site. From it derives the structuring of the site, reinforced by further study through the section and planting plan.

Erik Glemme — was active as the head of the architectural department at the Stockholm Parks Department under the leadership of Holger Blom, discussed above. They thus went far beyond being only instructions to the construction team.

The site plan of the cliff gardens in the Vasa Park, designed in , illustrates this ambition []. The plan is drawn in ink using lines without rendering, yet still provides a clear sense of the intended atmosphere. The scale is , a sufficiently large enough scale to indicate details and materials as well as give a sense of space. The square stone wall surrounds a rich paving pattern of stones and pebbles, laid out in a manner that recalls the mosaic pavements of Moorish gardens such as the Alhambra, which Glemme mentioned as a source of inspiration. Vertical elements such as small fountains, flower beds, and a single tree interrupt the continuity of the pavement.

Every perennial flower is depicted. The tree is drawn in a naturalistic manner and relates to several larger trees standing beyond the walled square, thus creating a link between inside and out. The lively brook located outside the walls produces a similar effect, bouncing playfully between little pools that descend the steep hillside, contrasting with the more tranquil pools within the stone enclosure.

It contains no measurements nor can it be perceived as an assembly of details, as working drawings often are. Instead, it is more a narrative of a designed. Vasaparken, Stockholm, Sweden, Ink on tracing paper. Stockholm City Parks Department. The drawing lacks abstraction; all forms, spatial circumstances, and materials are depicted as close to their actual appearance as possible. Yet the drawing is sufficiently accurate to be measured directly. The precision of the irregular joints in the walls and the specific shapes of the paving stones suggest that this plan could have been used at the construction site.

Considering the integrated design construction practices at the Stockholm Parks Department, this might well have been so. The only additional material for the cliff gardens in the Vasa Park now found in the departmental archives is a series of small-scale sections and one single technical drawing showing a typical part of the pavement. For a seven-year period he also served as Professor of Landscape Architecture at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, and greatly influenced its curriculum.

Two of these are of special interest: the comprehensive study of European garden art, Europas Havekunst, of is one of them. In Utypiske haver til et typehus: 39 haveplaner Untypical Gardens for a Typical House: 39 Garden Plans, , he produces a series of garden ideas all presented in a similar way []. The thickness of the line. Garden study, Denmark, Many of his own site plans bear witness to this belief, experimenting with elementary geometric shapes in different combinations. This tendency is most evident in the project for the allotment gardens in Naerum, north of Copenhagen, of [].

The plan resembles a wallpaper pattern, an even pattern of identical forms, seemingly printed with a rubber stamp. Only a few of the ovals in the lower corners have blackened edges; the others are identical prints. Are these biological cells seen through the lens of a microscope? Or a flock of turtles floating with an ocean current? Or even a pattern on a kimono?

Then, again, his presentation lies in perfect accord with his design vocabulary: a pattern constituted of simple forms, a restricted palette of plants, an elaborate design applied to an everyday commission. A perspective attempts to depict in two dimensions the visual impression of three dimensions. From its Renaissance development and single vanishing point, the constructed perspective has metamorphosed into full-color renderings today most often generated by the computer.

The forms are drawn only in outline and are shown in contour only. To make them more legible and effective, the designer has introduced short, typewritten descriptions at strategic places that reinforce the drawings with words. Walter Bauer — ran an active landscape architecture practice from the s through the s.

In his Stockholm office, he employed his wife Lisa to produce the office perspectives. They are more the work of an artist than an architect, producing the illusion that the project is not only a proposal but already exists. Although Lisa Bauer often used color in her own art, her landscape sketches were drawn in ink and seldom rendered with additional media. They rank as artworks in the sense that they convey impressions of reflections in water, movement in long grasses, shifting shadows on the ground. The trees are often depicted with traces of a leafy canopy and the pattern of the bare branches simultaneously, thus evoking a sense of time.

Darkened tree trunks tell us that we are deep in the woods; a huge rock forms the back of the hut with its low door and geometric ornament. We can almost imagine the hermit himself peeking at us from behind a tree. A fruit orchard, intended to complement the garden of Sundbyholm, shows widely planted apple trees in a flowering meadow of Fritillarias, Aquilegias, Myosotis, and wild tulips []. The image should not be taken literally, however; the trees as depicted appear to be at least half a century old and hardly just planted, but the sketch creates an atmosphere of what could come to be in the distant future.

As a free-hand device, perspective can help the designer investigate his or her own ideas, but it then requires a certain skill that not many designers master. As a mathematical construction it is beyond suspicion and never lies, but then again it only depicts the intended reality from one single viewpoint out of millions of possibilities and makes assumptions both about the sense of sight and the shape of the world.

These, in turn, make the selection of the station point an argument in itself. Perhaps the perspective has been used above all as a propagandistic instrument with which to persuade, for example, a client. These images are often stiff and numb, lacking the poetry of a more imaginative picture, which at its best may induce the feeling of a fresh breeze, swaying tree canopies, the scents of flowers, and the sound of voices. Engelsbergs Bruk, Sweden, The mill pond; perspective sketch. Sundbyholm, Sweden, The fruit orchard; perspective sketch. Apart from a few years in his early career, Walter Bauer always ran his own office that came to specialize in restorations of historical gardens.

His practice had to compete for commissions and images were used for just that purpose: as a tool to persuade the clients to accept the proposed design. They were a part of the marketing process. The fact that most of the projects were restorations made these sensitive perspective drawings all the more important.

Restoration must demonstrate deep respect for heritage, and often radical changes were not evident in the presentation sketches. Gunnar Martinsson — spent most of his career as a Professor of Landscape Architecture in Karlsruhe, Germany, a post he assumed at the age of Martinsson ran his own office in parallel to his teaching, designing landscapes in both Germany and his native Sweden.

In his early years of practice he frequently participated in competitions, made designs for private gardens, and wrote or co-authored several books—all three activities common for an ambitious young professional on his way to a successful career. He often uses elementary geometries, he salutes cutting-edge technique, he looks for novelty, and his design displays a purism that at times borders on austerity.

In his homeland, modernism in landscape architecture implied quite the opposite, namely, turning to the natural surroundings but leaving the romantic Arts-and-Crafts garden culture behind. They are constructions using their own means, perfect images of a perfect world. There is no sketchiness and everything appears under control. The black lines in ink appear as if etched into the surface of the vellum, every stroke witnessing a clear intention.

The drawings are complete, without hesitation or uncertainty. Vegetation appears almost as an exhibition item: identical trees, often without leaves, broadcast the architectonic structure of the branches; hedges are clipped as green rectilinear walls; perennials appear in immaculate studies. All the joints between the paving stones are presented, the furniture is arranged in an orderly fashion, but seldom do people inhabit the images.

These perspectives lack transparency: all objects are solid, occluding the features behind them. Every section of the drawings is razor-sharp and no. Garnisonen, Stockholm, Sweden, Perspective sketch. There is a certain flatness to these images, in spite of the fact that the perspective as a drawn construction normally heightens the sense of depth. Martinsson seldom uses color or shading, and all the tree canopies display the same level of detail in all their parts [].

The overall impression is that everything ranks with equal importance and that the designer commands it all. Often the pictures have frames around them, forming perfect squares. If a title block is included, it is written by hand with an accuracy that matches typing, all carefully composed and integrated into the finished composition.

Nothing has been left out and there is nothing to be added, the designer seems to say. Sven-Ingvar Andersson — is of the same generation as Martinsson. For a few years they worked together in the office of the legendary Swedish landscape architect Sven Hermelin, who is considered the doyen of Swedish landscape architecture.

Representing Landscapes

The two young men consequently shared many things in common that helped them professionally. Andersson omits things. His drawings want to transmit only the essentials, the most important message he has to deliver. There are few drawn lines in the images, but every one of them has a purpose. The lines have the elegant flow and decisiveness of someone who is already convinced about the efficacy and correctness of the design.

His solution was to add a long, rectilinear canal placed parallel to rows of existing lindens []. The new canal appears as a calm sheet of water; edges and other detailing are omitted. A bicycle rack in the foreground stands out in almost shocking contrast to the minimalism of the design. The sky mirrored in the water, and the shadows of the lindens, are subtle yet strong effects that the perspective sketch successfully mediates.

Addition of a canal to the existing landscape design, perspective sketch. The Danish architect Arne Jacobsen designed the original project in Sven-Ingvar Andersson has his origins, education, and early professional experience in Sweden. Like Martinsson, he has run a practice in parallel with his teaching. He has written extensively and for a long time has been one of the most acute critics in the field.

His drawings share this focused attention and acute presentations of his designs and as such appear equally as critical documents and representations. The relations between the landscape architect, the program, and the client often determine the nature of the graphic representation. Controlling all segments of the process, Holger Blom could afford to work in a pragmatic way. The perspective from Uraniborg is taken from the air. The project involved the restoration of the sixteenth-century Renaissance castle with garden that the famous Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe had built for himself on the small island of Ven.

It is a project built on one strong and original idea. The perspective sketch shows the scheme but— typically for Andersson—lies somewhere between imagination and built reality as it actually shows more than the intended quarter of the garden restoration []. His idea of building parks using primarily quite loose drawings assumed a careful regard for the nature of the site and an in-house construction crew. Two centuries earlier Fredrik Magnus Piper worked in an era when construction drawings were relatively rare, with detailed design and execution supervised on site. Both types demonstrate how the terrain itself can serve as the basis for a design.

The drawings have a sense of authenticity despite the fact that the site plan always shows the projected reality from a theoretical position far above the ground. Martinsson depicts the features of the design and their spatial interrelation; Andersson gives us an impression only of his main ideas. Walter and Lisa Bauer use perspective to win the commission and to convince the client of its benefits. All the examples discussed reveal how different modes of presentation reflect the nature of the program and site, the need for communication between designer and client, designer and designer, and designer and builder.

Uraniborg, Ven, Sweden, The restored Renaissance garden dating from the sixteenth century, perspective sketch. It has recently been published as a facsimile by courtesy of the Royal Academy for Fine Arts in Stockholm, together with a new commentary. Andersson, T.

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Jonstoij and K. In a democracy, the design of the landscape depends on the representation of the public. This public representation forces inventive drawing. Drawing against or for others is substantially different from drawing with or by others. This requires representing both the public and the landscape. Face-to-face collaborative drawing provides the political representation. It addresses a great variety of purposes, such as understanding a place, communicating the dimensions or essence of a space, exchanging spatial, philosophical, or programmatic ideas, and imagining choices for changing a site.

The entire participatory process, from beginning steps such as active listening to final steps including post-construction evaluation, uses drawing as a central method of communication. Obviously, only a few of these represent the landscape in a literal, figurative way, but all are essential to the public design process.

There are five domains especially critical to democratic landscape design: 1. Representing people. Coauthoring design. Provoking the familiar and the strange. Nurturing stewardship. Empowering people to represent themselves.

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Moving seating to the edges of the park reduced conflicts, allowing turf control and created a large multiple purpose open space that gang members share with all other users. The Civil Rights Movement and related urban renewal and freeway battles made designers painfully aware that we did not possess the skills to adequately represent people in the design process. These ultimately instigated the primary analysis that inspired a park design that solved what had been chronic turf wars.

Through experience with participatory design we learned that transactive processes enrich the making of built landscapes, but designers and involved citizens require a mutual empathy and common language. Users had to learn the language of landscape in order to coauthor designs. Drawing has been our most useful language; when thoughtfully executed, a drawing is less ambiguous than spoken language, especially given differences in culture, class, and gender language. Once, while sitting in a community meeting, I realized I was drawing upside down so that community members could more readily read the ideas we were generating.

The utility was obvious, and practice increased my skills. Drawing in this relation to the public is both useful and of symbolic import. Whenever I write upside down I notice that it positively affects the collaborative dynamic because the group is alerted about the seriousness of communicating using a precise and shared language. We must ensure that we understand each other, even if the process requires more time than verbal discussion alone. And we must be attentive to the various languages that the participants use. For example, several distinct languages were essential to the design of a new community center in Yountville, California.

One mother always studied the drawings carefully but said little during the meetings; she would take.

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Both the Dana Park and Haleiwa projects rely on the observation of behavior in space. In the former, technical and systematic research methods uncovered noticeable patterns; in the latter, the insight came from the careful looking required by the medium of watercolor. Painting is the preferred medium because it forces designers to observe more carefully during drying breaks.

Her written language was spatial prose, insightful, and precise. Each participant had to literally and metaphorically write upside down in order to communicate effectively while coauthoring the design. The plan for the Natural Park was co-authored under a tent on site. Sketching the words of another person requires aggressive listening.

Representing Landscape /and/ Architecture, 1500-2015

The designer sketches while listening, trying to give form to the idea the citizen expresses verbally. The resulting sketch tests whether two or more people are visualizing the same idea and as such may become the medium of exchange, a way to elaborate or create new designs. In some cases, the sketch may replace verbal communication. Where mountaintops had been removed, thousands of cubic yards of soil from nearby mudslides were used to recreate the original topography. Although layout and grading plans provided a general direction, most of the detailed design, including earth form and rock placement, was undertaken in the field.

The contractor responsible for the earth work and the designer learned that words, and even flag markers, would not produce the desired results. In response, the designer sketched as he spoke, starting by directing the grading to landmarks via sketches, and at times using them to guide the bulldozer that followed. Eventually these field drawings determined almost all the decisions about the pathways and overlooks; quick perspective sketches prevailed, over more formal working drawings, which became of less immediate value. After the Landscape Institute in the UK chose to discuss BIM in terms of its conceptual and delivery potentials and protocols rather than focussing on a specific software, such as Revit for example, BIM for landscape architecture has remained ambiguous both for landscape architecture and in this book.

While Vectorworks and others are also instituting BIM, talking about Revit directly would have allowed for an unpacking of the tool that would have been valuable and deeper for landscape architecture. But perhaps most importantly, even subversively in support of my critique about the move away from representation, Revit renews the value of drawing conventions because it reveals them as vital to understanding the digital model.

Nonetheless, for me as an antique digital user, it pulled together disparate strands that have re-energized my interest in the digital. The recursive nature of this cycle demonstrates why the process discourse holds the work of the cybernetician Gregory Bateson in such high esteem. Since both landscape processes and the computer operate in time, the model is a logical and exciting tool for investigating landscape, unlike, it must be acknowledged, the drawing.

However, the different speeds of the two the landscape and the computer make the seductive action-reaction model that Cantrell and Holzman are proposing practically difficult: while models and sensors in the computer operate in nanoseconds, and natural materials over tens of years for plants or millions for geology, human perception is in seconds, minutes, and if one is concentrating, hours.

Creating a response from a model that is not an inanimate object being moved by a mechanism is difficult. As long as the model is able to maintain a relationship with the world in real time, or close to it, these simulations bring a level of defensibility to decision making in landscape architecture that has never existed before, and mean that landscape architectural researchers ignore this technology at their peril. The idea that the digital is a world in itself is now unfashionable even as it is more pervasive than ever due to the naturalization that I am speaking of. During the s, Deleuzian scholar Brian Massumi made what I felt was a convincing argument that the virtual spaces created by the computer should not be treated as terrestrial, since the limits put on virtual models were a pretence, arguing that virtual worlds had different physics to Earth, rendering concepts like gravity meaningless.

Though always seeming to be interiors, to me cyberspace is a landscape. This assumption produces a data aesthetic that would feature in the work of Gibson, or in Matrix. Professors from these institutions provide critical and descriptive commentaries, explaining the impact of using different media to represent the same landscape.

This book is recommended for landscape architecture and urban design students from first year to thesis and is specifically useful in visual communications and graphic courses and design studios. All books are shipped in New condition promptly, we are happy to accept returns up to 30 days from purchase.

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