13 Splendor in ordinariness

The beat of informality against the discipline of geometric order, can lead to the most splendid qualities. […] Even big public gardens need some version of this formality and wildness, the relation of the cultivated to the wild. This character, rather like Roughness and Contrast, comes about as a result of natural unfolding where people and nature meet. The wild growth of the grass, trees, bushes, meets a need for order that comes from people — the lawn where the two-year-olds can play and roll around, the flattened path where it is comfortable to walk, the hard edge of a swampy pond which allows us to meet the water and stare at it.

Leaving trees intact: we make things go around them, give them the dignity of the structure the growing trees have established there. Then plant in relation to the sun and shade which is created. Allow the mess, where it wants to be, as a natural counterpart to the cultivated and pruned and tamed.

Sitting in this back garden, not far from the magnificent gate shown on this page, among the seedlings whose boxes lay on the porch, Mr. Murakoshi said to me, quietly: “You have taught us to appreciate another way of life.”
He was much too kind to me. But it was a very nice way for him to summarize my hopes and aspirations as an architect.

#book/The Nature of Order/3 A Vision of a Living World/7 The Character of Gardens#

Notes mentioning this note

Here are all the notes in this garden, along with their links, visualized as a graph.