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Making the Modern Landscape
Cornelia Hahn Oberlander and Susan Herrington
Nov 19, 2014 (6pm)

Please RSVP

On November 19, Graham Foundation grantee Susan Herrington will discuss her new book, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander: Making the Modern Landscape—the first biography of Canadian landscape architect Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, one of the most influential landscape architects of the twentieth century. We are also pleased to welcome Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, who will be joining Herrington for the presentation of the new book.


Cornelia Hahn Oberlander is a landscape architect who has been a pioneer in the fields of sustainability and ecologically-sensitive planning for more than sixty years. Born in 1921, Oberlander fled Nazi Germany at the age of eighteen with her family, and went on to become one of the few women to graduate from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design in the late 1940s, where she briefly overlapped with American landscape architect Lawrence Halprin. She spent her early years working with modern architects such as Louis Kahn and Dan Kiley, and has continued to collaborate with preeminent architects across Canada and the United States. Her landscape projects include the Robson Square Provincial Government complex and Courthouse in Vancouver (Architect: Arthur Erickson, 1974-1983); the Children's Creative Center for Expo '67 in Montreal, 1967; the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia (Architect: Arthur Erickson, 1976); and the Vancouver Public Library (Architects: Moshe Safdie Architects, 1995), among others. She is the recipient of many honors and awards, including the International Federation of Landscape Architects Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe Award (2011) and the American Society of Landscape Architects Medal (2012).


Susan Herrington’s research concerns the history and theory of designed landscapes. She is the author of On Landscapes (Routledge, 2009) and Schoolyard Park: 13-Acres International Design Competition (University of British Columbia Centre for Landscape Research, 2002), and has published articles in Architecture and IdeasFootprint, Landscape Journal, and Landscape Research, as well as numerous chapters in books. She was awarded a Graham Foundation grant for her recent book, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander: Making the Modern Landscape (University of Virginia Press, 2014). Currently, she is writing Landscape Theory in Design to be published by Routledge, and is conducting research on the architect Oskar Stonorov and Walter Reuther, former president of the United Auto Workers Union. Herrington is professor of landscape architecture and architecture at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada.


Related Grant: Susan Herrington, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander: Making the Modern Landscape (University of Virginia Press, 2014).

Image: Expo '67, An Environment for Creative Play and Learning. Courtesy of Canadian Centre for Architecture, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander Archives.

For more information on the exhibition, Experiments in Environment: The Halprin Workshops, 1966-1971, click here.