Annual U.Va. Architecture Lecture and Symposium to Feature Landscape Design from Down Under

September 15, 2010 — The Myles H. Thaler Memorial Lecture + Symposium at the University of Virginia's School of Architecture will feature three distinguished landscape architects from Australia: Anton James, principal of JMD Design in Sydney; Perry Lethlean, principal of Tayor Cullity Lethlean in Melbourne and Adelaide; and Julian Raxworthy, senior lecturer at Queensland University of Technology. The event will be held Sept. 20 from 4 to 7 p.m. in Campbell Hall, room 153.

James is a landscape architect and visual artist with more than 20 years experience designing projects in Australia, Europe and the U.S. He was recently awarded the 2010 Australian Medal for Landscape Architecture from the Australian Institute of Landscape Architecture and the 2010 International Architecture Award from the Chicago Athenaeum for the Paddington Reservoir project.

Lethlean is a leading contemporary urban and landscape designer. His work is widely published, and his designs, including Craigieburn Bypass, Waterfront Geelong and the Australian Consul Generals Residence in Kobe, have received multiple national awards.

Raxworthy's research concerns change in landscape architecture, with a particular focus on how landscape materials, notably plants are, or can be, designed to transform over time.

The symposium's accompanying exhibit, "Sunburnt. Contemporary Practices of Landscape Architecture," curated by Raxworthy and Sue Anne Ware, deputy head of the Architecture School at Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, opened today in the Elmaleh Gallery and is making its U.S. debut. Commissioned by the Royal Melbourne Institute's Design Research Institute and the Queensland University of Technology School of Design, its first viewing occurred in May 2009 during a meeting of the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects. The show includes parks, botanical gardens, boardwalks and waterfronts designed by numerous Australian firms. The exhibit is be open to the public on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Oct. 15.

In 1990, Myles H. Thaler, a member of the first graduating class of the Department of Landscape Architecture at the School of Architecture, endowed a perpetual lecture fund "to bring to the School of Architecture nationally prominent scholars and practitioners to give public presentations on the subject of 'the meaning of the garden,' in order to expand public awareness of the cultural significance throughout history of gardens both public and private."