Kierunki rozwoju architektury krajobrazu w Stanach Zjednoczonych
Wilczkiewicz, Małgorzata Zofia
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The present dissertation is the first Polish attempt to delineate the trends which stimulated the development of the domain called the landscape architecture in the United States. On the basis of the long term observation and research conducted by the author during several years of her stay in the United States, the postulates have been formulated that attempt to present the complexity of the issues re- lated to the emergence of the landscape architecture as a multidisciplinary field of knowledge. In order to understand the phenomenon of the American system of the natural environment protection and the methods of landscape development, the beginnings of the this relatively young (only four-century old) country must be re-investigated. Christopher Columbus discovered the new continent on his search for a marine-way to India. The colonization of the newly discovered land began, neglecting the protests of the rightful owners of these areas who had lived in America for generations. The United States are in possession of almost the entire continent of Northern America. The extensive coastline, numerous lakes, desert and mountainous areas alongside the exceptional phenomena of ecosystems as well as flora and fauna re- quired protection and regulations concerning the utilization of these areas. That was how the idea of National Parks was born. The act signed by the President Ulysses Grant in 1871 gave rise to the foundation of the National Park which was situated in the states of Wyoming and Montana – the Yellowstone Park. It was the first national park in the world The attempts to establish territories for recreation in the newly emerging American cities began to appear already in the early eighteenth century. The well known meadows in Boston and Cambridge, which had been used as pastures for cattle and places of the local militia drill, gave the origin to the later municipal in- vestments and public parks. Williamsburg, the capital of the English Virginia col- ony, was in possession of the territories outside the city which were preserved as the public green. The nineteenth century brought further development of industry which caused an intensive development of cities. From a small colony, New York transformed into a metropolis inhabited by approximately 100 000 people. Fred- erick Law Olmsted and Calver Vaux won the competition to design a municipal park. In 1857 the Central Park was established, based on the English park model. The city of Chicago created a major architectural centre which propagated its own style known as the Prairie School. This style defied the aesthetic vocabulary of the classical European architecture. The emergence of the city and port of San Francisco resulted in the influx of emigrants from China and Japan. In what followed, the Chinese and Japanese gardens and parks were founded on the whole territory of the United States. The rivalry of the two attitudes took place – the so far existing trend based upon the English park patterns known as picturesque, and the Eastern trend, designated by the mysterious term sharawadgi. The penetration of the Chinese and Japanese culture into the United States continued throughout the twentieth century. America adopted and accepted the Eastern artistic canons which became the part of the contemporary world art, especially after the Second World War. Such influence owed much to the creations of the Japanese and Chinese artists in the United States. One of such precursors was the American sculptor and landscape architect Isamu Noguchi, Ian McHarg and his work Design with Nature created in the 1970ies is still a highly valued position among the professors of landscape architecture. It is generally agreed that neither the knowledge of the principles of ecology nor a scien- tific approach to the territory guarantee the development of a good design. The above quoted book is considered to be one of the fundamental positions in the field of landscape architecture, while Ian McHarg is recognized as the author of the land analysis based upon historical, geographical, geological and climatic stud- ies. At the end of the twentieth century, the problems concerning the sustainable development united the endeavors in all continents. The common goal was the elimination of the threats related to the environment pollution and protection. And yet, although the action programs were identical in all countries, their imple- mentations differed significantly. The United States initiated an action to regain the municipal postindustrial territories. In New York, the High Line Park and Brooklyn Bridge Park were established, and Freshkills Park is currently being de- signed. Michael Van Valkenburgh was a leading landscape architect active in the first decade of the twenty-first century. His innovatory municipal parks based on the composed landscape design fulfill the principles of sustainable development, constituting at the same time works of art inscribed in the structure of the city.
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