“Building a bridge between the city and the country is fundamental, we have lost connection and empathy with rural Australia.”1 These words of Ticky Fullerton an ABC landline reporter and author of Watershed provided the initial inspiration for the theme of this edition.
Kerb #11 aims to explore landscape architecture of rural and regional Australia. This desire grew out of concern that previous Kerbs have generally been urban focused. Largely the theme of this issue has taken on a life of its own, moving from a primarily rural/regional focus to examine the edge of the rural and the urban. The interconnectedness of the rural and the urban is now the overriding theme.
The primary theme is however subverted to some extent by a Deleuzian undercurrent, which in some pieces is overt while in others it is more subtle. Landscape architecture has a particular framework for reading the landscape which is periodically redefined. Currently this is heavily influenced by a developing theory of landscape based around the philosophy of Deleuze.
That which becomes interesting then is the link between the primary and sub theme. This may not be immediately clear. It could be argued that the link is about the local and site, which when viewed independently can seem to negate the need to consider context. Several pieces in this edition deal with the local, one directly. Another could be the notion of territory. Included is some discussion of the way in which the urban and rural territories mesh, with their boundaries in a constant state of flux. In her article in this edition Parr states that ultimately rural and urban communities are interconnected; that is they mutually define and reorganise one another.
Heidegger argues that ‘A boundary is not that at which something stops, but, as the Greeks recognised, the boundary is that from which something begins it’s presencing’.2 It could be argued and is herein by McCormack that the urban presence is in the rural via various factors including tourism; the rural presence is in the urban via its dependence on primary production.
It has been a a hell of a ride, laced with the expected incestuous politics of landscape, as well as the challenging but rewarding internal wrangling. Our previous attributes have been deterritorialised, and we are not sure if we are going find them if again! Enjoy