Saturday, May 1, 2010

Who moved my Garden of Eden?

And the other day I walk into a club with a bunch of friends after a long day of work hoping for some fun and killer music. Turns out all we had was our share of a wet cat who was not at all amused with the turn of events. On a closer look, it was my friend- the hoighty-toighty Miss ‘I-never-step-out without-my-Manolos’ who ended up landing in a stream of water right in the middle of the dance floor.

Amusing? Hell yes!! 

Although a ruined pair of $450 Manolo’s did can the scenes for the night, the nonplussed lot of us who didn’t seem to understand the reasons as to why a pair of shoes (that look like a bunch of geckos died for) should put a lid on it.

We, (us the unaffected) simply headed to a pub downtown. 

But the one specific thing that caught my fancy was, ‘Why a running stream of water in the middle of dozens of gyrations and on the turntable?’ Turns out, the stream was a part of the beautification process we now have a term for- Contemporary Landscaping.

I recall vividly as a kid running through orchards of apple trees at our summer home or through the tea-garden (quite not what it sounds like though!!) which my aunt had painstakingly reared with Petunias, Tulips and Daffodils. She believed they ‘set’ the mood for the evenings. Currently, my aunt’s Petunias and Tulips have however given way to Rock gardens, elaborate sculptures of non-decipherable species and lots and lots of geometric lines that seem to fuse themselves in harmony with the wild outgrowth. A stark living experience from what I had seen a decade ago, Contemporary landscaping sculpts spaces with respect to nature while still creating a relationship with modern architecture and likeminded subjective characteristics of clean cuts and an aesthetic appeal to it. 

However, when someone tells me of the new and upcoming trends in the fields of landscaping and design; I’m sorry I beg to differ. As much as we want to believe that it was the 21st century human mind that came out with yet another fancy idea – to beautify your backyard; it has been something that has been in existence since the times of the Byzantine and the Ottoman Empire. It was hence no surprise as to how the Romans came up with doing up the entire Mediterranean coast into a single cultural entity replete with their way of living. 

Although those who love nature -unspoiled and wild, find this idea distasteful and would prefer gravitating towards more traditional forms of designing, the idea of contempo-scaping is to make-do with an experience that allows people to come closer to landscape on unique human terms. 


So…Miss ‘Hoighty-Toighty’ called yet again. This time wanting me to accompany her for the readings of a Russian Ballet!!

Think I’ll give it a skip and head to my Aunt Marion’s rock garden for some ‘set’ time with the newly installed statue of the Space-age Zeus by Andy Sturgeon!!!  




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