A few words with Professor Kongjian Yu by Laure Aubert | 2011 IFLA World Congress


Prof. Kongjian Yu is the founder of  Turenscape landscape architecture firm in Beijing and Professor at Peking University. With his significant international renown as one of the leading contemporary landscape architects in China, his keynote  during the World Congress was strongly appreciated.

Entitled the “Big foot revolution‟ Mister Yu began his keynote with how for thousands of years the civilized urban elite worldwide has maintained the right to define beauty and good taste (in China symbolized by the bandaged foot). The big foot revolution is about losing the bound on the feet, having a new integration to build ecological systems. He presented some projects and simple goals as making friends with the floods (and removing concrete), or being productive (for example some crops were used on a campus, with some rice planting festivals or harvesting days which became some important day in this university‟s life), valuing the ordinary and recycling the existing, the landscape as a living machine to clean polluted water and much more.


Why was it important for you to attend the IFLA Congress?
I was invited as keynote speaker.

What is for you noticeable in the Swiss landscape architecture?
It is really a tradition of innovation. The professionals here are always searching for something new. In a few words I would resume with minimalism, design, and the furniture’s’ design.

What are according to you the important current landscape issues?
It is about three aspects : water, environment and ecology. The issues raise the question how can the landscape architecture can be adaptive. Landscape is really a media.

What would you say about the landscape architecture field in your country ?
The landscape in China is on a good way even if the national association is more figuring about the gardens and traditions, not really on the design and urban planning.

You can see the video of  Professor Kongjian Yu’s keynote at LAND Reader

Laure Aubert attended IFLA World Congress in Zurich and filed this interview for us.

Laure Aubert is a French landscape architect working in Germany as project manager by a landscape contractor. Her different job positions abroad have combined skills from technical subjects, management, logistic to design. Her guiding thread, a multidisciplinary and multiculturaly approach, has led her to organize with a friend informal meetings in Berlin with landscape architects from differents nationalities and backgrounds.
Involved in the European Foundation of Landscape Architecture, she was in charge of editing with the support of the communication group the book Landscape 10, European Landscape Convention, Before and After. This 5 months long-term work was awarded during the IFLA Congress by the vivid interest of people from the whole Europe but also worldwide !