December 7, 5 pm

Lakeside Park 2006
Dec 12 to Feb 2
Peter Spillmann / Katja Reichard / Marion von Osten

The Park—Investigation in a Post-Productive Cluster


Throughout the history of human common areas, the park has played the role of both model and stage, functioning as artificial paradise, as a showcase for innovative technologies, as a masterpiece of the latest engineering arts, as proof of man’s mastery over nature, as a mirror of its times, as a celebration of the transformation of ideology into materiality, as a political arena, as governmental terrain, as teatrum mundi, as pars pro toto, and also as a place of retreat, idyll, freedom, as a place outside of society’s utility zones.

The Baroque park, for example, was designed in accordance with the latest scientific findings – manifesting sophisticated engineering that helped create a symmetrical, ceremonial stage setting with the ruler at its focal point. Baroque society promenaded through the park, remaining in perpetual motion (panoptically controlled through the sightlines dictated by status at court), past illusionist special effects, perspectival ornament and reflecting pools, through the theatre of nature, produced on the basis of the grid and according to the rules of Euclidian optics and geometry.

In the English landscape garden by contrast, the hierarchic Baroque ideology is replaced by an idealized nature in keeping with the new liberal worldview and economic order. … >>