This collection of articles is the third in a series titled Acta architecturae naturali and includes papers that could be summarised under the general title of landscape architecture. The focus is on parks, as joint creations of humans and nature. Parks are undoubtedly one of the most characteristic objects of landscape architecture that combine art and nature into a uniform whole. If the completion of a an architect-designed building, which is static by nature, signifies the end of the process, then the planting of a park designed by a landscape architect only marks the beginning of the process, because a park as a living object is constantly changing in time. Parks also embody another important criterion of landscape architecture. The objects of landscape architecture comprise everything besides buildings, for example streets, landscapes, squares, parks, cities, etc. Although the object is outdoor space, its design is not an objective in and of itself, but the focus must be on the relationship between the landscape and the person therein. In park design, people’s perceptions have been considered to be most important, and therefore, it is as if parks are the standard for landscape architecture, being the joint creation of humans and nature, and created for people.

Estonia is a country that is rich in parks. Most of Estonia’s parks are of a dignified age and their value is not only their age, but something quite different. Nothing is valuable only because it is old. Landscapes are like memory and similarly to memory, they do not speak to us until we see something that we recognise and that evokes memories. A part of a landscape’s value is the existence of recognisable signs therein. The number of landscapes that embody memories is constantly decreasing; their execution and preservation requires experience, a depth of thought and desire to delve into the subject. However, the main question is not why, how and what we want to preserve, but what we give up if we are deprived of our landscapes. In order to notice and recognise, one must know. The important knowledge about parks is collected here. The subjects to be covered include the various facets of parks, both physical and spiritual space, the technical and aesthetic aspects and many other important topics that are necessary when dealing with parks.

Published: 2013-11-30