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Rashid Rodah Dr. John Wright Geography 363 Term Paper Fall 2013 Donnell, Cultural Landscape Generally cultural landscapes portray the way in which humans used as well as adapted natural resources in the fullness of time, whether via agricultural, ranching, mining, and traditional native America cultural activities, or settlement activities…
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Download file to see previous pages... An example of this landscape is the Donnell garden, Sonoma, CA which is going to be discussed in this paper. This beautiful and most popularized place in the recent history of the United States America, in particular in the California state preserves one of the iconic designs ever created. The shape and lay out of this monumental cultural landscape tells it all. According to the available records the landscape design was done by architect Thomas Church, with h the help of Lawrence Helprin and fellow architect George Rockrise. This design which was identified as Donnell Garden in Sonoma was done for the family of the Donnell’s-Jean and Dewey. Nowadays the garden is regarded as the Modernist Icon as well as one of the top most preserved examples relating to its time (Treib, 2003.). The subject family selected as a location, a favorite point on their ranch where picnics could be enjoyed by both the residents and the visitors to the family. This point is described as hillside overlooking the San Francisco Bay’s northern extensions. This gives the location a unique viewing point of the environment it has been established. This unique location and design was completed in 1948 and sooner than later the garden become popular for its unusual, distinct, abstracted forms. This made the place the frequently photographed point in its vicinity. This further promoted it to stand out as a modern California living style that took place both outdoors and indoors, with fluid transitions amid these equally important locations (Treib, 3 Maturity and Modernity. 2003). It is worth noting that the garden was designed at the time in which the economy of California was considered booming and experiencing a rapid growth in its population. The conception of the garden by Church was to offer a place where people could relax, swim, entertain, garden, and play as well as barbeque. This gave a blended point where various recreational activities could be done simultaneously or consecutively giving someone a complete experience of the environment in terms of weather and climate prevailing at the point (Treib, The Donnel and ALCOA Gardens. 2004). This further explains why the place is considered the modern iconic place of California living style. At the Donnell garden, it is clear that the designer Church attempted to respond to the specific characteristics relating to client and site, whereas exploring new forms. Of specific interest to note is the biomorphic kidney-shaped swimming pool; its Adaline Kent sculpture that functions both as a central point and a minute, inhabitable island; as well as the floating deck that is designed with a wooden boards checkerboard that conserved trees whereas extending the living space outdoors. This beautiful transition between the inside and outside of the location gives a well thought modern way of connecting life styles from the indoors and outdoors by providing coordination of the scene at the point focused on (Walker 1989). More description of the cultural landscapes helps to give people the desire to be associated with the model modern tourist destination. It is described one of the very important gardens ever associated with the 20th century. It is also referred to as the El Novillero a name that comes after the former use of the site as a ranch (Walker 1989). This partly explains that renaming was necessary to make it an iconic ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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