restricted access Resource Guide for Preserving Modern Landscape Architecture
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Resource Guide for Preserving Modern Landscape Architecture

To assist in investigating Modern landscape architecture, listed below is a sampling of the best resources for research, documentation, recordation, designation, treatment, and management (following The Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties & Guidelines for the Treatment of Cultural Landscapes).


Foundational to understanding the field of Modern landscape architecture has been an increasing interest and surge in scholarship and research on the subject. This can be evidenced with the expansion of special collections, publication of books, journal articles, and papers, and survey and recordation efforts. Listed here is a selection of key books and publications to guide your research. Online resources and academic archives with collections of individuals whose work contributed to the Modernist movement in landscape architecture are also included.

Research: Resources about the Modern Movement

Walker, Peter and Melanie Simo. Invisible Gardens: The Search for Modernism in the American Landscape. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1996. A history of the individuals and firms that defined the field of landscape architecture in the United States from 1925 to 1975. Looks critically at the work and influence of Thomas Church, Roberto Burle Marx, Isamu Noguchi, Luis Barragan, Dan Kiley, Stanley White, Hideo Sasaki, Ian McHarg, Lawrence Halprin, Garrett Eckbo, and others.

Treib, Marc, ed. Modern Landscape Architecture: A Critical Review. Cambridge: MIT Press, 1993. A seminal review of the movement with essays from the 1930s and 40s by Garrett Eckbo, Dan Kiley, James Rose, Fletcher Steele, and Christopher Tunnard and from contemporary educators, scholars, and practitioners who examine the historical and cultural framework of the period and the legacy of Tunnard, Eckbo, Thomas Church, Kiley, and others.

Campus Guides Series. Princeton: Princeton Architectural Press, 1999. With 22 campus guides to date, the series documents the architecturally most significant campuses in America. Most volumes include their Modern era of campus development.

Research: Published Resources about Individual Practitioners and Firms

Although too numerous to mention, a number of valuable references about Modernist practitioners and their firms are listed below.

Birnbaum, Charles A. and Stephanie Foell, ed. Shaping the American Landscape: New Profiles from the Pioneers of American Landscape Design Project. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2009. Biographical profiles of 151 professionals who shaped both the land itself and our ideas of what the American landscape means. Included are profiles on Arthur Edwin Bye, Grady Clay, Lester A. Collins, Garrett Eckbo, M. Paul Friedberg, Carol Johnson, Dan Kiley, Lawrence Halprin, Rich Haag, Ian McHarg, Robert E. Marvin, Ted Osmundson, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, Milton Meade Palmer, Robert Reich, Robert Royston, Hideo Sasaki, Geraldine Knight Scott, John Ormsbee Simonds and Robert Zion. (See also, Pioneers profiles on the website of The Cultural Landscape Foundation.)

Kiley, Dan and Jane Amidon. Dan Kiley: The Complete Works of America's Master Landscape Architect. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1999. The seminal monograph of Kiley's career is richly illustrated with plans and photographs. For additional information on Kiley see also Rainey, Reuben M., and Marc Treib, eds. Dan Kiley: Landscapes—The Poetry of Space, as well as the two volumes of Process Architecture, Nos. 33 and 108, dedicated to Kiley's work.

Treib, Marc, and Dorothée Imbert. Garrett Eckbo—Modern Landscapes for Living. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of California Press, 1997. An in-depth look at the career of Garrett Eckbo; included are more than 100 of his designs and a bibliography of books written by him and about him. For additional information on Eckbo see also Laurie, Michael, interviewer and Karen Madsen, ed.An Interview with Garrett Eckbo, January 1981. Watertown: Hubbard Educational Trust, 1990. Transcribed Interview; and Process Architecture No. 90 dedicated to Eckbo's design philosophy; and the many books authored by Eckbo, including Landscape for Living, The Art of Home Landscaping, Urban Landscape Design and The Landscape We See.

Rainey, Reuben and J.C. Miller. Modern Public Gardens: Robert Royston and the Suburban Park. San Francisco: William Stout Publishers, 2006. Insight into Royston's understanding of play and postwar suburban development as seen in his Modernist park designs.

Treib, Marc, ed. Thomas Church, Landscape Architect: Designing a Modern California Landscape. San Francisco: William Stout Publishers, 2004. Provides a...