William Howard Adams
Publications
Garden History
0896599191.jpg
Beginning with the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece, and Rome, this book skillfully traces the story of gardening through the art, history, and literature of these early sites of culture, as well as later findings of archaeology. It then takes us farther afield into the later civilizations of Islam and Mughal India, reveals the important contributions of Italy and France, China and Japan, lingers in the incomparable gardens of England, and finally transports us to the New World.
   Structured around themes of the international exchange of aesthetic ideas and the exciting saga of the study, cultivation, and distribution of plant life, the book’s progression is both chronological and geographic; each chapter identifies and discusses the major design and horticultural contributions made to garden history in each period and by each society. Although there have been numerous garden histories, there has never been one of this historical and global scope. Principal photography by Everett H. Scott. Originally published as Nature Perfected. Courtesy Abbeville Press.

Abbeville Press, 1991
356 pages, 301 illustrations, 253 in full color
Translation: L’art des jardins, Abbeville Press, 1992

ALSO on VHS
Nature Perfected: The Story of the Garden
Twelve-part documentary series written by William Howard Adams, based on the book Gardens Through History,  for Britain’s Channel Four and the Io Corporation of Japan.
   This six-tape set includes the following programs: Paradise on Earth; Ancient Spirits — China and Japan; The Heritage of Rome; Garlands of Repose; Gardens of Conquest; New Perspectives; The Landscaping of England; Moving On; Glory and Grandeur; The Machine and the Garden; Grounds for Change; The Genius of the Place.

Malone Gill Productions, 1995
The French Garden: 1500-1800
FrenchG.jpg
The French Garden is one of the celebrated and distinguishing elements of that civilization, as is its cuisine and code of manners. Rooted in an ancient tradition, subtly drawing upon and transforming inspirations from many sources, French landscape art represents a major contribution to Western culture. In its formal manifestation, before the environmental revolution of the eighteenth century, it was one of the most powerful images and symbols of the seventeenth century’s Golden Age. Indeed, the influence of the French garden in theory and in practice was to dominate the rest of Europe with the stamp of French cultural and aesthetic ideals in a way that political ambitions, and the armies of Louis XIV, were never able to impose.
   This landmark study of 300 years of French garden art, from its late Medieval roots to the magnificent achievements of Andre Le Nôtre and his creations for the Sun King, remains a significant addition to the history of the garden.

George Braziller, 1979
159 pages, 168 illustrations
Translation:  Les Jardins en France, Edition l’Equerre, 1980
Grounds for Change
Major Gardens of the 20th Century
G4C.jpg
In an impressive documentation of the most important 20th century landscape architecture, this book examines the Italianate and Anglophilic urges of designers of the late 1890s and early 1900s, the Cubist and Modernist approaches of the twenties and thirties, and then proceeds right up to recent attempts to evoke beauty through environmentally responsible design. Includes works by Alvar Aalto, Geoffrey Jellicoe, Frank Lloyd Wright, Lutyens, and Carlo Scarpa. Photography by Everett H. Scott.

Bulfinch Press Books: Little, Brown & Co.
216 pages, 112 illustrations, 90 in full color
Roberto Burle Marx
The Unnatural Art of the Garden
The Brazilian master landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx, one of the foremost among the creators of an influential modern landscape aesthetic in the late 1930s, was the first landscape architect to be given an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art. This book, the catalogue for the exhibit, examines his work, highlighting its breathtaking range, from small-scale private gardens to large public parks. It reveals him as an artist of lasting stature and significance, and a world-class landscape architect.


Museum of Modern Art
80 pages, 91 illustrations, 50 in full color
Denatured Visions
Landscape and Culture in the 20th Century
DV.jpg
Radical transformations of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries have affected our attitude towards nature and impacted the landscape, modern building, the parks and gardens of this century. How we shape our physical environment as a fundamental reflection of our culture, is the subject of this compendium of essays on landscape in the twentieth century.
   The essays in this book evolved from a symposium of distinguished historians, scholars, architects, landscape architects, and artists, organized by The Museum of Modern Art, New York, in 1988, and originally titled “Landscape and Architecture in the Twentieth Century.” As the symposium progressed, the participants arrived at a tentative consensus that the problems of parks, gardens, and urban/suburban planning in our time could be discussed properly only in the context of the larger contemporary crisis in the relationship of human life and the natural environment.
   Edited by William Howard Adams and Stuart Wrede. Includes essays by Vincent Scully, Kenneth Frampton, and Leo Marx.

Museum of Modern Art, 1991
144 pages, 175 illustrations
Atget’s Gardens:
A selection of Eugène Atget’s garden photos
Atgets.jpg
Although Eugène Atget is universally recognized as one of the legendary masters of photography, he is chiefly celebrated for his turn-of-the-century Paris street scenes. Now for the first time, we can explore the sensual and poetic beauty of the great French gardens and parks around Paris through Atget’s incomparable and unknown photographs.
   Jacqueline Onassis and William Howard Adams organized the first exhibition of Atget’s garden photographs, personally searching uncharted collections including the archives of the Monuments Historiques, the Musée Carnavalet and private collections in Paris, New York and Washington. Other collections represented include the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Doubleday & Co., 1979
120 pages, illustrated with 76 photographs by Atget

 

 

© 2003 William Howard Adams

Gardens Through History: Nature Perfected