- EditorialMaking Landscape Public / Making Public Landscape
- In the field of urban development and spatial planning, a remarkable amount of attention has been given to the theme of ‘landscape; over the past 20 years. The notion of landscape turns out to have an extremely great capacity to keep generating new matters of interest. At first, the focus was mainly on ecological questions, such as the water issue, but after that, almost the entire spatial discussion became ‘landscapified’. The days when the idea of landscape simply referred natural or rural settings are long gone. The therm ’ urban landscape’, for instance, has become commonplace. And nowadays we also speak of ‘leisure landscapes’, ‘residential landscapes’, ‘energy landscapes’, ‘health care landscapes’ and so forth. The ‘landscapification’ of the spatial discourse was also accompanied by a striking emancipation of landscape design. Landscape architects succeeded in taking over aspects of integral regional design that urban developers and planners had ignored for a considerable while. At the same time, they also became more directly involved with architecture and product design.
OASE also joined in the discussion on landscape, by publishing a number of themed issues. In 2002, #60 Urbanism Out of Town discussed the diffuse city and te intense interpenetration of city and county; in 2004, # 63 Countryside examined changes in the environs; and in 2009 #80 On Territories featured regional design.
In this issue we want to make the focus both broader and sharper. Sharper, in the sense that we talk about the idea of landscape in a very specific manner, namely as a reflection of public debate and social imagination. Broader, in the sense that we are shifting the discussion to the role of professional in the public debate.