Vibrant cosmopolitanism or understated Australian : Australian landscape practice in the ‘space-in-between’

Armstrong, Helen (1999) Vibrant cosmopolitanism or understated Australian : Australian landscape practice in the ‘space-in-between’. Kerb Journal, 6, pp. 26-31.

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Landscape architectural practice should be a site for insurgency rather than its more common state as a site of paranoia. Anarchy and parodic anti-heroes are a strong part of Australian culture but has Australian landscape practice lived up to this? Australian landscape practice reflects the dilemma of much of Australian cultural production. It is caught between either representing the stimulating peculiarities of the local world or trying to impress the unassailable indifference of the major global metropolis.1 A challenge lies in making art of this dilemma. Some creative forms of Australian cultural production have explored a defiant vernacular. Others have tried to occupy the ‘space-in–between’, 2 but most landscape practice in Australia are versions of European or American practice. There is, however, an emerging form of landscape practice which reflects Australia’s cosmopolitanism, namely the cosmopolitanism derived form a much travelled populace, who is engaged in debates about identity and has a healthy scepticism about strident certainties. In parallel with the defiant vernacular, the incipient cosmospolitanism and the ersatz global is another form of practice, which can be described as ‘understated Australian'.

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ID Code: 97945
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1324-8049
Divisions: Current > Schools > School of Design
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Deposited On: 08 Aug 2016 00:14
Last Modified: 13 Aug 2016 10:14

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