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Lincoln University Makes its Mark

13 March 2006

Lincoln University Makes its Mark at Landscape Awards

Lincoln University’s landscape architecture group has achieved its best-ever result at the industry’s biennial awards, winnng six awards for research and design critique at professional level, and four student design awards.

Professor Simon Swaffield, Landscape Architecture Group Leader, says the level of success at the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architecture’s “Pride of Place” is a measure of Lincoln’s strength in research, theory and design critique.

He says it is significant that four of the five professional winners are people studying at post graduate level. “The achievements of our post graduate students is an illustration of the evolution of landscape architecture research and teaching. Lincoln has produced many award winners in their second year and third year of their Bachelor’s degree, but our future success will also be at post graduate level where the focus is on theory, critique and research.” This direction is in line with the Government’s strategy for teritary eduction, he says.

In the Professional Awards category:

- John Clemens, doing a Professional MLA, receives a Landscape Research Gold award for his Critique of the Northwest Arch. The judges remarked that this was a very releveant critique concerning suburban Christchurch sculpture at or near the entry of a subdivsion. “It is a work that is lyrically written, original, tactful and direct. This work is a useful contribution to critique in New Zealand. Skilled articulation of the principles of critique and a light-hearted and delightful but rigorous work.”

- Dr Shelley Egoz, a senior lecturer in the Landscape Architecture Group, receives a Landscape Research Silver Award for It isn’t a village anymore, a study about community values which the judges believe is a contribution towards more informed choices.

- Dr Marion Read, who completed a PhD in 2005, receives a Landscape Research Bronze award for The Construction of Landscape: A case study of the Otago Peninsula. The judges commended the thesis, which asserts landscape is a social construct to be understood by ethnography and discourse analysis. The judges said it highlighted the benefit of research and should be made available to all members of the profession.

- Wendy Hoddinott, doing a MLA, receives a Landscape Research Bronze for Passing Time: A Phenomenological approach to heritage design. This was judged an “excellent research essay taking the difficult topic of heritage design and intepretation of design to create an inspirational outcome, easily read and understood.”

She also receives a Landscape Research Merit Award for Critique of the Christchurch Cathedral Columbarium, an essay explaining why the columbarium was built, the design concepts, materials and a critique of the design.

- Shannon Davis, who commenced PhD studies this year, receives a Landscape Research Merit award for her project Wings of Peace, an article about the fire-fighters reserve in central Christchurch. The judges commented that it was a well researched, evocative and effectively communicated article which recognised the designer’s purpose and was well illustrated.

In the category for student projects:

- Chris Punt receives a Gold Award for Tahunanui Ecological Park, a design demonstrating the range of ecological systems that characterise Nelson. The result is a matrix of environments wedged between the sea and the urban area.

- Wendy Hoddinott receives a Silver Award for Passing the Time at Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere, a project that evokes imagery of both the physical and cultural past of the place. It was described by the judges as displaying a mastery of design.

- Charlotte Grant wins a Silver Award for Shirley Renewal, an urban revitalisation project in a lower socio-economic neighbourhood. The project focuses on neighbourhood activity in a new community centre with facilities such as outdoor BBQs and hangi areas.

- Mark Teasdale receives a Silver Award for Maungatautari Ecological Reserve, a project which establishes an entry experience to this mainland island reserve.

Professor Swaffield says the landscape architecture group is working on a number of international links with other specialist research centres, including the University of Paris-Londron in Salzburb, KVL University, Copenhagen; and the University of Sheffield.

The latest acknowledgement of students’ work at a national level follows on from international success in 2001 and 2003, when Lincoln University undergradute students were placed first and third respectivley in the International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) World Student Awards. Lincoln students have also won a joint gold award in the NZILA awards in 2002; and three excellence and five merit awards in 2004*.

* The previous NZILA Professional Award winners from Lincoln University are, 2002 – Chris Yandle and Sarah Bishop, Joint Gold; 2004 – Stuart Houghton, Margaret Popperwell, Natalie Watkinson, Excellence; Charlotte Jackson, Sam Bourne, Mark Teasdale, Shannon Davis, Leona de Ridder, Merit.


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