It’s always a joy when you see geometric patterns in architectural landscape design that reveals its fascinating structure. It is unfortunate (and not the architect’s fault) when the budget is so restrictive or an owner is really conservative that the structure has to reflect that. Isn’t it lovely when a building’s design is so unique that it reaches way into the psyche and elicits a response that wants to celebrate with complete exuberance? An example like this is just too good and deserves recognition over and over again.
Unfortunately, opportunities to execute complementary design are not always present. There sits this building with all sorts of interesting things going on and no opportunity to respond. What’s a landscape designer to do? Especially one with the talent to match the architecture. And, what’s worse, the location is one that promises a considerable public exposure.
Out Of The Box
Time for some independent thinking and bold design! Matching or even contrasting the architecture is a flattering response that will be appreciated by those who understand the intent and, optimistically, by anyone that has a sense of adventure. Most designers have a desire to express a style unique to their perspective that they seek to prove as they mature their design perspectives. This is what these designs offer: the ability to work out a deeply held design theory. A bold architectural design deserves a bold green design response.
Now comes the opposite idea. As if determined to prove a point, contrast is the perfect example of how “order” and “unique” can pair as complements. Hanging foliage on a symmetrical two-dimensional grid sets up a pleasant tension and balance in a space.
Both ideas are interesting experiments and either can be easily rearranged to present an alternate mode that satisfies yet another sensitivity. Bona Fortuna!
Contrast or balance is one way to respond, but when the building is a lesson in radical geometry, why not join the fun and go with it? Creativity lies in this opportunity—why pass it by? While fewer restrictions mean greater design freedom, underplaying the latitude could work against a conservative landscape design, making it seem like a last-minute tack-on. Experimenting is the first order of business with opportunities like this. With such challenges comes interesting possibilities. The geometry is compelling and inspiring. Keeping the already water-burdened location in mind, a light hand with watering requirements will be appreciated. With no actual site to work with, the building itself becomes the opportunity for a playful landscaping scheme, with a geometrically-inspired design… Delightful!