368 pages, 148 colour & 110 b/w illustrations
A Japanese garden is immediately distinct to the eye from the traditional gardens of an English manor house, just as the manicured topiaries of Versailles contrast with the sharp cacti of the American Southwest. Though gardening is beloved the world over, the style of gardens themselves varies from region to region, determined as much by culture as climate. In A World of Gardens of illustrated essays, now available in paperback, John Dixon Hunt takes us on a world tour of different periods in the making of gardens.
Hunt shows here how cultural assumptions and local geography have shaped gardens and their meaning. He explores our continuing responses to land and reworkings of the natural world, encompassing a broad range of gardens, from ancient Roman times to early Islamic and Mughal gardens, from Venetian gardens to Chinese and Japanese gardens, as well as the the invention of the public park and modern landscape architecture. A World of Gardens looks at key chapters in garden history, reviewing their significance in past and present and tracing the recurrence of different themes and motifs in the design and reception of gardens throughout the world.
A World of Gardens celebrates the idea that similar experiences of gardens can be found in many different times and places, including sacred landscapes, scientific gardens, urban gardens, secluded gardens, and symbolic gardens. Well illustrated and wide-ranging, A World of Gardens is a treasure trove of ideas and inspiration.
Introduction: The Garden World and the World of Gardens
1. Sacred Landscapes from Delphi to Yosemite
2. Hunting Parks to Amusement Parks
3. Ancient Roman Gardens and their Types
4. Islamic and Mughal Gardens
5. Western Medieval Gardens: From Cloister to Suburban Backyard
6. The Renaissance Recovery of Antique Garden Forms and Usages
7. The Paragone of Art and Nature in the Renaissance and Later
8. The Botanical Garden, the Arboretum and the Cabinet of Curiosities
9. Garden as Theatre
10. The Garden of 'Betweenity': Between Andre Le Notre and William Kent
11. Leaping the Ha-ha; or, How the Larger Landscape Invaded the Garden
12. The Role of the 'Natural' Garden from 'Capability' Brown to Dan Kiley
13. The Chinese Garden and the Collaboration of the Arts
14. Follies, Fabriques and Picturesque Play
15. The Invention of the Public Park
16. National Parks and International Exhibition Gardens
17. Japanese Gardens and their Legacy to the West
18. Arts and Crafts Gardens: The Artist Back in the Garden
19. The Prose and Poetry of Modern Landscape Architecture
20. The Once and Future Garden
Acknowledgements and Photo Acknowledgements
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John Dixon Hunt is Emeritus Professor of the History and Theory of Landscape at the University of Pennsylvania. He is editor of the journal Studies in the History of Gardens and Designed Landscapes, and the author of many books including The Afterlife of Gardens (Reaktion Books, 2004), Nature Over Again: The Garden Art of Ian Hamilton Finlay (Reaktion Books, 2008) and Art, Word and Image (with David Lomas and Michael Corris, Reaktion Books, 2010).