The Mid-Century Modern Garden

Capturing the Classic Style

The Mid-Century Modern Garden
Format: Hardback, 224 Pages
ISBN: 9780711238237
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
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A lavishly illustrated exploration of the prevalent architecture and landscaping style of the mid-century period (c.1940-1970) and its links with modern-day living, this sumptuous garden design book features examples of contemporary interpretations of the style as well as expert advice and tips on how you can achieve the style for yourself.

In the second half of the twentieth century, outdoor living was born. Even modest homes were open plan with large picture windows that brought the outside in – and a deck or platform was the perfect answer to extending living outdoors. These lived-in spaces were easy to maintain with their limited plant palette and focus on structure and hard landscaping. They offered a space in which to relax and enjoy valuable leisure time, a pursuit that is as relevant now as it was then. Contrast was the design dynamic – a response to the energy that was fuelled by people’s hope for a bright future after the Second World War. Outdoors this translated into a lively interplay of textures and colours between hardscaping materials, pieces of outdoor art and striking specimen plants.

The first part of this seminal book charts the evolution of the MCM aesthetic starting with Frank Lloyd Wright’s 'Usonion' houses and finishing with Cliff May’s ranch houses looking at spaces outside and within and design influences from Europe. The second part focuses on classic and contemporary interpretations of the style in exceptional gardens from all over the world. It offers a unique insight into this period of seismic shift in garden design and will be a rich source of inspiration for garden makers today.

The author

Ethne Clarke grew up in Park Forest, Illinois designed by Elbert Peets in 1947 and recalls the daily adventure of weaving through the curving drives and undulating topography to reach her school, church and Girl Scouts meetings. She is an internationally known journalist and lecturer and the author of a number of best-selling books on practical gardening, design and landscape history. Her most recent books are a revised edition of Hidcote: the making of a garden and the biography Infinity of Graces: Cecil Pinsent, an English Architect in the Italian Landscape from W.W. Norton, NY and London. Ms Clarke holds a Master of Philosophy from the faculty of Fine Art, De Montfort University, Leicester, England, and has lectured around the world in her subject areas. After living and working in England for nearly thirty years, she returned to the USA in 1998 to live in Austin, Texas. There she was a guest lecturer for the Landscape Master degree program in the School of Architecture at the University of Texas and contributing editor, landscape and garden design, for Conde Nast’s House and Garden magazine. Ms Clarke now lives in Colorado Springs where she lectures on the ethnography of landscape and gardens in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs.

Reader reviews


Format: Hardback, 224 Pages
ISBN: 9780711238237
Size: 9.055 in x 10.236 in / 230 mm x 260 mm

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