"A lot of the best design is generated when you have significant constraints."
Andreas Stavropoulous, a landscape architect in Berkeley, California, remodeled a vintage Airstream trailer, turning it into an ultra-modern, traveling studio. In a 2009 article for Dwell, he describes the process:
The renovation was necessarily an exercise in restraint and creativity. With just 150 square feet to work with, I jettisoned the 1950s colors of flesh tone paint and wall-to-wall linoleum, and moved in with cork flooring, track lighting, fresh colorful paint, and custom designed cabinets and furniture to fit the sinuous interior topography. I revealed the beautiful workmanship of the riveted aluminum end caps, and removed sewage facilities completely. I performed the work myself, trying to keep the design in my head one step ahead of the building process of my hands.
We often don't think of mobility as a relevant attribute of a living space or studio, but for a landscape architect, it opens up a whole new relationship with the environment:
My obsession with mobility, modularity, and affordability began long before the Airstream and has since extended beyond. As a recently self employed (read: laid off) landscape architect, I have been able to address several of the problems that I see in my field. Namely, the lack of connection between the LAND and the ARCHITECT. Whereas landscape architects once spent significant time ±on the site, the profession now finds some of the most creative minds shoehorned into cubicles. This seemed like a loss to me, and I wondered how it might be possible to create a space for real understanding within the profession—the kind of understanding that occurs from seeing a day of shadows move across a place, or listening to and observing people in a space.
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