Places and landscapes that spoke to you.

Landscape Architecture for Landscape Architects Forums PLACES & SPACES Places and landscapes that spoke to you.

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    This is sort of an extension of a previous discussion we started last month.

    We’re curious people, slightly philosophical in our ways, and love to hear people’s stories. We often tango with the question of “sense of place” and what it really means. As landscape designers, it’s a topic which we confront invariably day to day and we realize “sense of place” has different implications for everybody. It’s a dynamic thing to think about, and one that really seems to define, at least for us, what our profession is really about. After all, by definition and practice, landscape design is kind of ephemeral, as it is always changing, even in the tangible products we manipulate, create, and restore.

    Post a photo which you have taken of a specific place you love — the kind of place which you always imagine yourself returning to, because it somehow spoke (or continues to speak) to you. Places that may not even be alive today, or those which are so changed today, but spark your memory of when it was “perfect.”

     And briefly–what makes it special to you. 

    I took this when I was in NYC for the first time a couple of months ago. Originally from San Francisco, big city living is built into my DNA, and since moving to Portland 6 years ago, I was longing for the kind of frantic, urban tumult only big cities could offer. When I came to New York, I was anxious to explore the city–and that was exactly what I did. But I was constantly in a pool of people and stuff–so many people and stuff on the subway, in the stores, out on the streets, by the food carts, in bathrooms–so much so that I was unable to reflect, think, and at times, breathe! I found this spot in twilight, after I got lost for a couple of hours from wandering aimlessly, and had my first real moment of rest. I was in the city, but not quite. From my vantage point, the skyline across the pond was part of another city, and I was in my own space–there but not there, here but not here. I had a sense of place here. Granted, millions of people visit Central Park each year, but it’s pretty damn special for a reason, and it spoke to me at the right time.

    What are the landscapes that inspire, move, change, and motivate you?

    Shavawn Coleman

    What a great post! I unfortunately don’t have a picture of this particular place right now, but my most favorite place is the Boston Commons in downtown Boston. Surrounded by such large buildings, then you enter the gates and you are instantly taken away from the hustle of the city just a few yards away. They have plays, a large lake, vendors, rose garden and even a small pond for children to splash in. It’s a great place to get lost in!

    My other favorite place, though it wasn’t really designed by a landscape architect, is Arcadia National Park in Maine. In the summer time, there are trails that line the cliffs that over look the ocean. Absolutely mesmerizing. The cliffs are open to climb on, so for hours I was trailing up and down the cliffs with this amazing view of the ocean! 


    That’s okay, we found a photo for you!

    It looks like a great summertime spot. Do you get to visit this place often?

    Shavawn Coleman

    I wish I get to visit it often. I haven’t been for about 10 years. Living in Las Vegas, Boston isn’t exactly close. But if I can swing it, hopefully I will be there later this year for the ASLA Conference. Thanks for the picture!

    Xpat Larki

    Wuzhen Ancient Watertown in Zhejiang Province, China, dubbed as “Venice of the East”.

    One of the best, if not the best preserved ancient watertowns in the world, in my opinion.

    If one’s from an urban area, this is indeed the perfect getaway. Quaint, mystical and effortlessly romantic.

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