Our work is rooted in a sense of purpose.
Nothing is more gratifying than seeing people enjoy the places we create for them. Each project offers us the opportunity to develop relationships with a new set of people in a new place. Every site is a specific location in which to push forward our perspective on the big question: how should we build the world?
Landscape form-making must be approached as a collaboration in order to succeed.
We must bring humility to our role as designers. We have to look beyond site boundaries to respond to the context in which we are working. Novel shapes can be captivating and fun. But, they too often become the focus of design. Bold patterns imposed without sensitivity can obscure the fundamental qualities that make up each unique place in the world.
The built environment needs attention.
Most land becomes duller and less alive when humans get involved. The sights, sounds, and scents which shape the experience of being in a place are disrupted. The wildness of nature is traded out for something tame and predictable. Indigenous materials and plants are replaced with the products of industrialized landscape production--pre-grown plants, mass-produced materials, and standardized solutions. These landscape are fragile and toxic; chemicals and mechanical systems are required to keep them alive. They leave us cold.
Landscapes have work to do.
Humans yearn for a sense of belonging and connection to nature. It’s hard-wired in our DNA. As humanity concentrates ever more densely in cities, the urbanized landscape plays an increasingly critical role in people’s lives. As people spend more of their time interacting with screens and devices, they lose a sense of where they fit within living systems. Contemporary landscapes must expand their capacity to meet human needs. And they have to do this work while adapting to our changing climate.
We will inspire lasting bonds between people and place.
It is not enough to create landscapes which meet functional objectives. We have the capacity to create places where people ground themselves in their immediate environment and understand its relationship to the incomprehensible scale and scope of nature. With sensitivity and focus, we can create immersive environments which amplify the specific qualities that make each place special. Our work should inspire awe. It should instill confidence and calm, and create ebullient feelings of surprise and delight. It should and it must.