The Garden in the Machine the Duisburg-Nord Landscape Park
One hundred and fifty years after the sound of the machine broke the silence of the garden, as examined in Leo Marx's seminal book, The Machine in the Garden, the gardens of Latz-Partner at the defunct steel plant in Duisburg-Nord Landscape park just north of Duisburg, German, sound a new note in the silenced machine of the postindustrial landscape. The gardens, each with its own unique character and color-a bright green spiral fern garden, a pink-green parterre garden, a silver-gold roof garden, a climbing rose garden, and a tranquil water lily garden-set within obsolete coal and ore bunkers and cooling tower pools and framed by dead industrial fragments, transform the ruin into a reliquary, a sacred container of memories, myths, and fantasies. They conciliate yet provoke the scarred, aging concrete containers and rusted steel vestiges, triggering the kind of intense dialogue between culture and nature that Latz+Partner seek to engage in all of their derelict post-industrial projects. A recurring gesture in Latz+Partner designs, the garden is deployed as an entry, opening up the formidable landscape to reinterpretation in ways that "could never be engendered by either an artist or nature alone".
This is an article from Land Forum International; 5(April); 78-85. Posted with permission.