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Landscape Architecture is the art of persuasion and compromise. Anna Galecka-Drozda in her series 10 Questions for Landscape Architects

Wiktor Bochenek
09 of December '22

"10 Questions to a Landscape Architect" is a new series of short talks inspired by the series "10 Questions to...". This time our attention is turned to landscape architects and architects. In today's episode, landscape architect Anna Galecka-Drozda (Green Zone) talks about her approach to design.

1 Landscape Architecture is, in one sentence, this....

... the art of persuasion and compromise; a profession that has a special mission to shape a friendly and healthy living space, to mitigate negative climate change, and unfortunately is still sometimes seen only in decorative aspects: "landscape architects are flower specialists."

2 The most underestimated aspect of landscape architecture is...

... is that studies related to landscape architecture are treated as one of the final branch studies, additions to the construction project. A landscape architect should be present from the very beginning of the design process as a person competent to recognize the potential of a place including the natural one, deciding/co-deciding on the shape of the landscaping project.

3. the most inspiring space for you is....

... The historic park where I grew up. I spent my childhood among the flower beds, axes and view openings, observed the repeating cycle of nature, as a nine-year-old I could name the trees growing in the park.

The 4th most important book related to landscape architecture....

... it is difficult to choose the one most important, but I will point to "The Language of Patterns" by Christopher Alexander. It is worthwhile to return from time to time to these universal (perhaps at times somewhat utopian) prescriptions for space, it helps to re-establish the inner order of the world.

5. most inspiring figure

Frederick Law Olmsted, the father of landscape architecture, a visionary who in the 19th century promoted solutions that we are rediscovering today and still consider relevant. These solutions today we call the blue-green infrastructure of cities.

6 I begin the design process with....

... A multi-faceted reconnaissance of the site and needs, which involves talking to the future users of the designed space; field studies, which, in addition to the typical inventory, allow you to feel the space; and finally, analysis of archival, planning, natural materials... A lot has to happen before I start :)

7. favorite moment while working is....

... when the information gathered beforehand is translated into a design concept, the moment when the vision of the place clarifies. I also like the moment when I see the space play itself, and my task is just to make it available.

8 The most important realization in your career is....

... a small garden at a historic villa in Poznan's Lazarus. This realization is like a lens in which all the most important aspects of landscape architecture focus for me: simultaneous protection of natural and cultural resources, it is an example of urban green acupuncture in a densely built city, and finally it is the pleasure of creating a cool place, in full communion with the Investor.

9 The dream project is....

... On a micro scale, it is the design of the street where I live, it needs to be greened :) On a macro scale, it's a new interpretation of Poznan's urban greening system.

10. favorite plant is...

... birch - treated as a weed by foresters, called "garbage tree" by garden owners, it is delicate and subtle, yet capable of colonizing places inaccessible to other plants, a tree with great survival power.

asked Wiktor Bochenek

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