UNSW Built Environment Landscape Architecture: Shawna Ng

15 06 2009

Hi there again guys! This semester passed like a flash—as expected! While I  had a slow start to the semester, it wasn’t long before that buzz of activity which I had been so accustomed to in my previous year, started to set in; Not to the extent that it was unbearable though, but rather, that it added that needed bit of adrenalin to my life!
This semester consisted of two main studio projects. The first site of consideration was at George’s Heights (as mentioned in my previous blog entry), where we were tasked to design a path that would enhance the experience of a visitor to the park. Below are some images of the drawings that I produced for this project.

To keep it brief, I would sum up my learning point from this studio in a word: CONCEPT. Every successful design must have intent even in its desire to remain subtle about the concept it is based on. This means having a strong concept that can be easily understood and enjoyed by any user of the park (i.e. ordinary man on the road) without having to be too blatant about it.

In light of this, I felt that the concept of “deconstructing boundaries” was especially apt, since instead of delineating specific paths per se, I deliberately created landscapes that suggested them. In that manner, people define their own paths and perhaps, through that, could derive a richer experience from journeying through this site.

The other studio project was based in Sydney Park where we were expected to consider how we might redesign the south west corner of the park to include a sports centre, an arts centre, or a sustainable village. Again, my knowledge of another word is enriched through this studio: CONTEXT. This project not just required one to come up with a strong concept with programs supporting this, but also to do so with respect to the context (cultural, physical, environmental, historical etc) to justify this. Context had to be considered on several levels, be it the suitable programs in the redesigned area itself to support the main center, the southwest corner with respect to the whole park, or the whole park and how it sits in the wider scheme of things (i.e. in the city of Sydney). Below, the final panels narrate a story of connectivity and sustainability from the known history of the site to the future proposed design plan for Sydney Park.

All in all, I have come to learn, both in theory and studio that design really is a social act— where the needs of people ought to take precedence over the aesthetic considerations for the site.  This presents to me a whole new set of challenges that I’d never needed to consider before, which is, how I might retain a creative design response within a practical and highly disciplined framework. However, speaking from experience, once you see past the restrictions that these considerations pose, it has been highly liberating in terms of the knowledge I am now equipped with, as well as my ability to articulate my ideas and concepts.
It has truly been a great semester and I’m looking forward to the many new lessons that I might glean in the next one (just as I did in this!)




One response

16 06 2009
Landscape Architecture Works in Japan? | Garden Design Ideas

[…] Shawn Ng, Bachelor of Landscape Architecture « FBE_UNSW […]

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