Chair Christophe Girot · Institute of Landscape Architecture · ETH Zurich
On the search for a topological definition of landscape aesthetics, the chair’s MediaLab – an interdisciplinary team of landscape architects, architects and filmmakers – teaches and researches on the visual and auditory culture of landscape. The critical involvement with the perception of landscape is the basis of qualified architectonic design. Methods continuously refined through the exploration of the reflective potential of different media lay the foundations for the work in LandscapeVideo and LandscapeAudio. A crucial aspect of this approach is the comparison of the medially framed landscape with the palpable sensual experience encountered through fieldwork, since the final goal is to find ways of incorporating new insights into our future environment.
We understand sound as a primary element of the spatial structure and aesthetic quality of a landscape. Combining experimental fieldwork with a state-of-the-art surround laboratory setting, we analyze, remodel and recompose sonic spaces. Guided by composers, acousticians and sound artists, our students learn recording and composition tools and discover new approaches to architectural design.
In the process of investigating urban and rural landscapes, the video camera is used as a sketching tool to analyze and edit the material through new montages that consider the spatial, temporal, aesthetic and social aspects of a site. How can we summon and translate the things we hear, see, smell and feel – our aesthetic experience – in a filmic montage?