Modernist plazas. Those large vast expanses of concrete often in the heart of a city’s downtown, perhaps lined with an allée of trees, a modernist sculpture, and a water feature.
I have fond memories of spaces like these – running as a child as fast as I could from one end to the other then looking up at skyscrapers that seemed to touch the sky. Wind, air, city smells, all combined to inform of my earliest aesthetic preferences and my professional career in landscape architecture and public art.
Many examples of these plazas include: Boston City Hall, the Christian Science Church in Boston, and Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco are significant places designed by some of the twentieth-century’s most outstanding designers – Hideo Sasaki and Lawrence Halprin to name a few.
Place is personal. Understanding what informed our earliest memories of spaces helps us understand our preferences in creating new places in conversation with community – people who have all had different life experiences and ideas of what define place. Read the rest of this entry »