Students will team with leading design professionals Feb. 15, 2019, at Aggie Workshop, a series of lectures and an afternoon design charrette hosted by the Texas A&M student chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects.
The annual event is held in conjunction with the Feb. 14 Department of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning’s Annual Career Fair in Langford A.
Speakers and participants will explore this year’s Aggie Workshop theme, “Material Synergy: Liking Design Intent with Creation of Place.” The theme highlights how landscape designers’ selection of materials affect a project’s form, aesthetic sensibility and additional factors.
“Designers choose specific project materials for more than just decorative or sustainable purposes,” said Daniel Douglas, an event organizer and senior landscape architecture major. “Materials can engage a user’s cognition, start a cultural discourse, or create a distinct environment.”
The keynote address of this year’s Aggie Workshop will be presented by Ken Smith, a leading U.S. landscape architect whose projects include the Village of Yorkville Park, an urban park created in 1994 that helped revitalize a Toronto neighborhood and earned the ASLA’s prestigious Landmark Award.
The park operates as a “magnetic” force within the city throughout the year, said Toronto Globe and Mail architecture critic Lisa Rochon.
“When people go to Village of Yorkville Park they experience it with a sense of abandon, as if they were kids seeing the Prairies or the Rockies or Niagara Falls for the first time. The park simply gives them permission. And therein lays the strength — and wisdom — of its design,” said Rochon.
Trained in both design and the fine arts, Smith explores the relationship between art, contemporary culture, and landscape. Much of his work pushes beyond traditional landscape typologies — plaza, street, and garden — to landscapes that draw on diverse cultural traditions and influences of the contemporary urban landscape.
He is the founding principal of Ken Smith Workshop, a New York-based urban design firm that focuses on projects in public spaces.
Additional workshop speakers will include David Hocker, president and founding partner of Hocker Design Group, an internationally recognized, award-winning landscape architecture studio based in Dallas.
In the afternoon, groups of students will work side by side with design professionals at a charrette to design a project to be determined.
Aggie Workshop will conclude with a social on the recreation center terrace.