The Landscape Idea: Its Evolution in Heritage Conservation

October 9 & October 20

with Nancy Pollock-Ellwand

Looking back on the past half-century of landscape thinking in heritage conservation, this first online gathering raised questions shared by Canadian heritage practitioners, like “What do we want from the practice of heritage conservation today?” and “How do we profoundly connect with local knowledge and people?”

We were pleased to have Nancy Pollock-Ellwand, Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Design at the University of Calgary, guiding the discussion. Nancy presented the evolution of international landscape thinking and practice, with examples of Canadian projects that have contributed to the continuum of landscape approaches.  

Nancy’s presentation identifies ecological, indigenous and non-Western perspectives as key opportunities, and challenges, for cultural landscape thinking.  These areas of understanding have Canadian and international relevance, as reflected in the Florence Declaration on Heritage and Landscape as Human Values (2014).

The presentation stimulated a rich discussion among participants tuning in from British Columbia, Quebec, Alberta, the Yukon, Ontario and France.  Sharing challenges and breakthroughs from current work, the conversation ranged from methods of articulating the culture-nature connection to questioning the field’s focus on “character” and challenging the concept of planning.

More about Nancy:

Nancy Pollock-Ellwand serves as the Vice President, North America for the ICOMOS-IFLA Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscapes. She will bring her recent reflections on The Landscape Idea to the upcoming annual meeting of the ICOMOS International Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscape taking place in Jeju Island, Korea in November 2015. Nancy is currently writing a book on the Olmsted Firm in Canada.