By: Gwynn Thayer
Blog post written by Lindsey Naylor
The Special Collections Research Center offered an archival show-and-tell for students enrolled in LAR 444: History of Landscape Architecture, taught by associate professor Fernando Magallanes. The session featured works from the Landscape Architecture Archive in addition to rare books and images that reflect broader trends in design, botany, agriculture, and more. Magallanes requested diverse materials to support the aim of the course, which is to provide a broad overview of landscape architecture history grounded in a larger social, scientific, and artistic context.
The event was also meant to give students a sense of the Archive’s scope, and its potential as a source of inspiration and insight for design and research projects.
Highlights from the Landscape Architecture Archive included architectural drawings, renderings, and presentation materials from the collections of Lewis Clarke, Richard C. Bell, Edwin Gilbert Thurlow, and Reynolds & Jewell. Featured design and planning projects included the Brickyard, the 1965 Raleigh downtown capital plan, and the N.C. Zoo, giving students a peek into the historic context of familiar places. Students also could flip through correspondence between NCSU landscape architecture faculty members and their prominent international design colleagues, like Roberto Burle Marx and Garrett Eckbo.
Sketches, photographs, and architectural drawings were on display for Fayetteville’s iconic Tallywood Shopping Center sign. The modernist 1960s design was by Bill Baron, an industrial designer and NCSU graduate who also worked on projects with Clarke and Bell. Baron recently donated his Tallywood drawings, correspondence, and photographs to the SCRC. The finding aid for this collection will be available in a few weeks.
Students got a sneak peek at the work of R. D. Tillson, a landscape architect who practiced in the High Point area from the 1930s to the 1970s. The Tillson drawings, which fill more than 250 tubes and flat folders, are another recent acquisition and are currently being processed and organized. The collection promises to provide unique insight into the way the practice of landscape architecture evolved in the Southeast during the 20th century. At the show-and-tell, students examined grading and general development plans for Rock Creek Park, an Albemarle, N.C., project funded in the 1930s by the Works Progress Administration.
SCRC staff shared a couple of the hand-colored lantern slides of B.W. Wells, a celebrated NCSU ecologist who built a deep knowledge of the state’s native plants and ecosystems. The slides included in the exhibit showed the trumpet plant and the venus fly trap, Wells’ personal favorite.
Magallanes’ students were particularly drawn to the exhibit’s selection of rare books, including an original 1856 edition of The Grammar of Ornament, the work of architect Owen Jones that is often referred to as “the Bible of design.” Also on hand was an original 1803 edition of Observation on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, by English landscape designer Humphry Repton. Repton is known for his series of Red Books and for the innovative layering of before-and-after drawings of his planned landscapes.
By: Gwynn Thayer
The Special Collections Research Center is pleased to announce that additional Matsumoto architectural drawings are now available online. The George Matsumoto Papers were acquired in the late 1990s and contain important materials documenting Matsumoto’s work, including correspondence, photographs, architectural drawings and sketches, and other materials. George Matsumoto’s work was documented in a publication from 1997 called “Simplicity, Order, and Discipline: The work of George Matsumoto from the NCSU Libraries’ Special Collections.” In this book, a number of scholars weighed in on the importance of his work. Former College (then School) of Design architecture faculty member Robert Burns wrote, “George Matsumoto’s North Carolina legacy is distinctive, and, in many ways, heroic. He created a body of exceptional buildings….he also offered an example of integrity and dedication to principle that will long endure.”
Matsumoto was born in 1922 in San Francisco, California, and earned his B. A. in Architecture from Washington University. He studied at the Cranbrook Academy of Art and later worked with various architectural firms. Soon thereafter he joined NC State’s new School of Design in 1948 until he left for Berkeley in 1961. Matsumoto was brought to NC State by Henry L. Kamphoefner, the first Dean of the School of Design. Matsumoto is considered to be one of the key early faculty members at Design, and especially important as a practitioner and teacher who promoted modernist architecture. Matsumoto was influenced by leading architects such as Mies van der Rohe and Marcel Breuer; Burns wrote that “The ideas that mattered most to George Matsumoto as a designer and as a teacher were those that served as the focal themes of the modern movement: strict adherence to functional demands, clarity of plan, structural logic and expression, economy of means, perfection of detail, and the rationalization of construction processes tending toward industrialization.”
By: Karen DeWitt
September 16, 2016
9:30am – 10:30am
- Teaching and Visualization Lab at the James B. Hunt Jr. Library
After years of Virtual Reality technology and experiences not being able to match user expectations, recent public launches of Head-Mounted Displays like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive and increasing industry engagement finally seem to validate Virtual Reality as a tool for entertainment, education and research. As an introduction to the topic, Mike Cuales will provide an overview of current Virtual Reality technologies, applications for 360 video in education and a look at future trends. In the second part of this Coffee & Viz event, Gary Kapral will talk about his practical experience with using various approaches to Virtual Reality in his research and the classroom and identify some of the potential gains and drawbacks of the technology.
Mike Cuales is the Creative Director at NC State’s Distance Education & Learning Technology Applications. Gary Kapral is a postdoctoral associate in biochemistry at Duke University.
Note: There will be a Virtual Reality “petting zoo” before and after the presentation where you can try some of the latest devices and applications.
Free and open to the public.
Coffee & Viz is a program of the NCSU Libraries. Coffee and light refreshments will be available in an adjacent space begining at 9:15 a.m.; program begins at 9:30 a.m.