Dk encyclopedia of landscape design chris young pdf

Dk encyclopedia of landscape design chris young pdf

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Dk encyclopedia of landscape design chris young pdf

A DK Encyclopedia of Landscape Design (DK-ELDK) is an illustrated one-volume reference to the history and theory of landscape design and garden architecture, as well as listing design practices, schools, and trends. It was released in the United Kingdom in December 1995. At the time of its release it was part of the ‘DK’ series which included A DK’s Dictionary of the Ancient World and A DK’s Dictionary of Classical Architecture.

Of the dozens of illustrated monographs in the ‘DK’ series, A DK’s Encyclopedia of Landscape Design was perhaps the most controversial, perhaps because it openly expressed so much modern sentiment toward the traditional art and design disciplines. (For example, it denounced the Golden Section for being “used to design rivers, roads and other similar things” and for being “used in the design of gardens”, although without offering any practical alternatives to its rejection.)

The DKs are best known for their in-depth and often historically comprehensive entries, and for their criticism of artists and designers whose work they deem unoriginal. In both cases, the DK series (and the ‘DK’ itself) was the height of artistic rigor of its era. They were works of opinion, criticism, and education: a bellwether of popular taste.


The DKs sought to bring architecture and design to the readers of their time by studying art history and philosophy, and bridging the two with an appreciation of modern design methods, materials, and form. One could well consider them proto-Wired magazine, a comprehensive, context-driven encyclopedia, aiming to update older scholarship on the same. (Compare with Henry Payne’s A Lexicon of Gardening: Volume 1. Landscape Gardening. Ed. —— and the similarly resolutely modern and forward-thinking Vol. 9. Plastics and Recycling. Arts. ——). One notable feature of the Encyclopedia is its apparent acceptance of contradictory trends as long as they harmonize, a feature that was to be at the heart of their later entry into the Penguin Handbook of Architecture. The Encyclopedia of Landscape Design’s monochromatic palette of the 1990s is particularly playful, almost satiric. Yet the DKs’ fascination with the most modern artistic mediums — photography, computers, industrial design, and even industrial design — on one hand, and traditional methods and materials, on the other, is what make it a point of departure in the history of landscape design.

“It is a shame that such an enjoyable book should have been published so recently, and the text I have just received from the printer has, of course, made it still more readable and useful. It ought to be the source of much pleasure and much profit to landscape gardeners in Britain, and those who take an interest in landscape gardens abroad.

But a terrible thing has happened. A dastardly thing has happened. The very authors of the series have presumed to rename the original and hitherto unaltered text — to undertake a castration operation, if I may so put it, on a classic of landscape design, revamping it in such a way as to reduce its content to a mere bagatelle, in effect, to rewrite history from scratch!”

It is only a pity that the authors of the new ‘DK’ have not learnt from their own previous encyclopedia, the ‘DK’ series. It would have been infinitely preferable to retain the character of an encyclopedia, devoted exclusively to the subject, from which one could obtain the necessary information on the subject. It would be the task of a dictionary or of an encyclopedia to record historic facts and events, it would be the task of the classic to record the essence of the subject: to trace its continuous evolution, to record the most significant artists, to give the reasons for each particular form of design, and above all, to explain the principles involved in a way which would be clear, unambiguous, and have the reader comprehending what he is reading, whereas the ‘DK’ series is constantly wandering away from its own purpose, interrupting itself in the middle of its sentences and even in the middle of the paragraphs.

To publish such an encyclopedia is an enormous task, involving not only an enormous volume of work on the part of the authors, but a constant criticism and review on the part of many editors. I might add, on my own part, that there is not a single book in the entire series which is absolutely free of critical remarks.

I will not bore you with a long disquisition on the subject of the text.I will merely say that it has gone through many drafts, it has been read and discussed by many landscape gardeners, it has been the object of debate in some local gardening societies, and is the envy and admiration of the rest of the gardening world. It is in this form, that I would have preferred it to appear.

As far as the illustrations are concerned, they have all been selected by the authors themselves, and all, as far as I can see, are new, for the very fact that the DK series has so many illustrations, and those so well selected and reproduced, has won the admiration of those engaged in the creation of illustrations for other publications.

When one reads it as such, a monograph on landscape gardening, one is amazed to see what is new, how it breaks new ground, and how it lays the foundations of a new movement in landscape design. Its existence is the pride of the gardening world, and we cannot fail to welcome it. For this reason, I will add, that all details of illustrations, page numbers, and so on, should be counted against it, for those who have not got this volume, and who would have been better served had they not got it, should not look forward to finding answers to the problems discussed.


The text is bilingual (that is to say, has a mixture of text in English and French), and is printed on Japanese paper. There are a few footnotes, though most are just explanations of historical terms. The endnotes are

Watch the video: Knowledge Encyclopedia History! The Past as Youve Never Seen it Before by DK (June 2022).


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