• The Aesthetics of Contemporary Planting Design
    Marc Treib
    Thorbjörn Andersson, Cristina Castel-Branco, Alexandre Chemetoff, Andrea Cochran, Kate Cullity, Erik Dhont, Richard L. Hindle, Laurie Olin, Tim Richardson, Mario Schjetnan, Christine Ten Eyck, and Peter Walker
    ORO Editions, 2021
    Marc Treib

Roberto Burle Marx, Fazenda Vargem Grande, Areias, Sao Paulo, Brazil 1979–1990. Photo: Marc Treib

Presenting the thoughts and work of a select international group of landscape architects and historians, this book is enriched by references to historical landscapes and contemporary work by others. Designing with plants must necessarily first consider local environmental conditions; but discussions of their combination and composition has been lacking—except in garden design. The pursuit of beauty assumes that to design with plants requires art, science, and ethics, as well as skill and knowledge. The Aesthetics of Contemporary Planting Design offers thirteen views on planting design, with discussions about its role in our culture(s), in science, and its relation to the people and the natural world in which they live. Despite differences in ideas, discourse, and terminology, each essay positions an aesthetic regard for landscape design within a greater social and environmental context, and thus fills a serious gap in contemporary landscape architectural discourse.

Marc Treib is professor of architecture emeritus, University of California, Berkeley, where he taught studios, seminars, and history courses for almost forty years. As historian and critic of landscape architecture, graphic design, and architecture he has published widely on modern and historical subjects in the United States, Japan, and Scandinavia. Of his more than two dozen books, his most recent are: Austere Gardens: Thoughts on Landscape, Restraint, and Attending (ORO Editions, 2016); Pietro Porcinai and the Landscape of Modern Italy (coeditor, Routledge, 2016); Landscapes of Modern Architecture: Wright, Mies, Neutra, Aalto, Barragán (Yale, 2017); The Landscapes of Georges Descombes: Doing Almost Nothing (ORO Editions, 2019); and Thinking a Modern Landscape Architecture, West & East: Christopher Tunnard, Sutemi Horiguchi (ORO Editions, 2020).