I have borrowed my title for this post from Peter Cook, a British architect and founder of Archigram, a collaboration of six architects known for architecture through drawing. The City, Seen as a Garden of Ideas is a survey of meditations on contemporary urban conditions in cities. Cook is an eloquent writer and reveals the influences and motivations behind his seminal works and recent projects in a lyrical way.
I was looking at this blog and I saw these amasing photos of Wisteria Tunnel at Kawachi Fuji Gardens, Kitakyushu, Japan and it got me thinking about The City, Seen as a Garden of Ideas. Cook proposes that throughout much of his practice he was always interested in the inside-outside model. The notion of the edge line of a building should not be a dominant barrier but instead that “any building is but a temporary interruption in the ultimate rolling and groaning and metamorphosis of the ground.” I like this idea of a soft boundary, a continuum from the inside to the outside or vice versa. Cook enjoys the unpredictability of vegetation especially if it is played against formal built structures. Vegetation will “shimmer and fade” through seasonal changes and how is that reinterpreted in built terms. Artists have also blurred the boundaries between the inside-outside with interesting installations. Jeff Koons is probably the obvious artist to begin with since Puppy is permanently installed at Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in the front entrance.