Contemporary China has seen swift and dramatic change in recent history. As a modern nation it struggles to redefine its culture, balancing ancient history with contemporary global values. In 2011, The City of Kunshan decided to form an education and outreach hub in the west end of the city. This involved relocating the historic Kunshan West High School, a premier high school in the city, in conjunction with the establishment of a satellite campus for Duke University.
The scale of the project is quite small, located on a rooftop on a typical Dutch city house built in 1909. Not only small by size, also old in terms of structure. Our ambition was to create a luscious garden space in between the ground and the clouds. In 2005 the roof decking was renewed. A wooden terrace (18 sqm, hardwood FSC), green roof part (approximately 30 sqm), sunroom, indoor stairs, and fence were added.
Beech is a character tree for the Swedish southernmost province Scania. The beech also has a few specifics which makes it differ from other trees. The canopy owns a horizontal structure, and together with the equally horizontal position of the single leave this renders an architectural quality to the tree. The smooth, light grey bark makes the trunk resemble a leg of an elephant. The competition entry for the new plaza at Hyllie district in Malmoe was sent in by motto Fagus, which is the scientific name for beech. The idea was to establish a beech forest on the plaza, contributing with a regional identity to a site that lacked most landscape features.
President Obama will award the 2012 National Medal of Arts to Laurie Olin and 11 other recipients next week in the East Room of the White House. Olin, 74, has been a professor at University of Pennsylvania and chair of the landscape architecture program at Harvard, he later returned to Penn were he is still Practice Professor of Landscape Architecture.
Laurie Olin established the landscape architecture, urban design and planning firm bearing his name with studios in Philadelphia and Los Angeles. OLIN has won many awards for its numerous projects across the world from the 1980′s to most recently Central Delaware Riverfront Master Plan which won the AIA Honor Award for Regional and Urban Design and The Chicago Athenaeum International Architectural Award.
Laurie Olin is a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) who this year won the 2013 Thomas Jefferson Foundation Medal in Architecture granted jointly by the Thomas Jefferson Foundation and the University of Virginia School of Architecture.
Laurie Olin will be awarded the 2012 National Medal of Arts for “….his contributions as a preeminent landscape architect. Renowned for his acute sense of harmony and balance between nature and design, Mr. Olin has dedicated his energy to shaping many iconic spaces around the world and to educating new leaders in his art.”
VIDEO CREDIT | Laurie Olin on Olmsted, Kiley & Halprin | TCLF