The Suffocating Embrace of Landscape and the Picturesque Conditioning of Ecology

DSpace/Manakin Repository

The Suffocating Embrace of Landscape and the Picturesque Conditioning of Ecology

Citable link to this page

 

 
Title: The Suffocating Embrace of Landscape and the Picturesque Conditioning of Ecology
Author: Ellison, Aaron M.
Citation: Ellison, Aaron M. 2013. The suffocating embrace of landscape and the picturesque conditioning of ecology. Landscape Journal 32, no. 1: 79-94.
Full Text & Related Files:
Abstract: What are natural landscapes? Are they “out there,” separate from people, or are they creations of our own perception? An exploration of artistic visions of landscape on the one hand and the development of ecology as a self-conscious science on the other suggests that for nearly 150 years ecology has been conditioned by romantic, picturesque portrayals of landscape. Landscape (as landscab) originally implied people living within and shaping a capricious nature, but rapidly evolved to landtskip: natural scenery reflecting a balance of nature viewed from the outside. Despite repeated scientific demonstrations of the lack of ecological balance at any time now or in the past, ecologists (and most other people) persist in clinging to a romantic conception of landscape with nature in balance. An explicit analogy between Fernand Léger’s 1959 lithograph La Ville—Le Viaduc and an old-growth Douglas fir/Western red cedar forest suggests that Modernist or Postmodernist visions of landscape may be more realistic visual representations of nature. To reframe and reconfigure ecology and environmental stewardship to better reflect current understanding of how nature—including people—“works,” contemporary landscape artists must engage with ecologists, environmental scientists, landscape architects, and the broader public to redefine the nature of nature.
Published Version: doi:10.3368/lj.32.1.79
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Other Posted Material, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#LAA
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:11315411
Downloads of this work:

Show full Dublin Core record

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

 
 

Search DASH


Advanced Search
 
 

Submitters