Designing the skeleton of/for robust landscapes by Thierry Kandjee

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How can we create robust landscapes? In order to answer this question, pruning the rose became one model for action, using cultivation as a ‘regime of care’. The rose itself as a living structure that man can shape has implied a tacit understanding of the key term ‘skeleton’, which has been expanded upon during the course of the PhD.

The successive definitions of the ‘skeleton’ have been refined throughout the research process in an iterative manner, defining four modes of practice: the modes of designing – Armature, Ecology, Score and Platform. The design of Skeleton as Armature is the practice of shaping the ground conditions as the infrastructure of landscapes, primarily foregrounded within the French tradition of landscape architecture. The design of Skeleton as Ecology advocates an integrative and holistic approach to landscape, acknowledging the specificity of a spatial intelligence shaped by Indian and Dutch landscapes. The design of Skeleton as Score marks a shift in the practice during the research, towards the approach of landscape as an adaptive framework, acknowledging the work of the pioneer American landscape architect Lawrence Halprin. The design of Skeleton as Platform opens the approach of robust landscapes through the definition of values systems, of issues to be cared for.

The exploration of each mode of practice of designing robust landscapes, using a shifting understanding of the term ‘skeleton’ as an investigative tool, is the central argument of the research.

Year: 2013
Examiners: Victor Tenez, Kelly Shannon, Nancy Pollock  Supervisors: Leon van Schaik, Martyn Hook


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