About this talk

Running time: 31 minutes

The plant world was the subject of Lawrence Halprin's early studies at Cornell University before he came under the spell of Frank Lloyd Wright (see The World's Greatest Architect) at Taliesin East, then moved to Wisconsin and eventually Harvard, under Gropius (see The Victory Of The Modern Approach Is Sure) and Tunnard, to become a landscape architect.

Since he started to practice in San Francisco in 1964, his work, especially the fountain plaza in Portland, Oregon, has been admired the world over. Recipient of innumerable awards, he is the author of many articles and several books of which "RSVP Cycles" and "Taking Part" are the ones that best illuminate his methods of helping people to participate in the creation of their own environments.

Halprin is profoundly influenced by the process by which natural environments arise. In his talk, he explains how he translates this into our everyday lives, not by copying nature's shapes and materials, but by producing abstractions of the processes. He endeavours to capture the essence of what the landscape, be it urban or rural, has to offer and, moreover, to create an environment that contributes to the creative enlargement of human life.

This is Halprin's first talk for us, his second from 1997 being The Roosevelt Memorial.

Please note that a transcript of this talk is available - please contact us for further details.

Lawrence Halprin


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