New publication by Vogt landscape architects and the chair of Günther Vogt at ETH Zurich
Edited by Günther Vogt und Thomas Kissling


Anyone viewing what we call a “landscape” from a distance will recognize that it is an artifact, a habitat created by humans as part of our built environment. Designing this realm carefully is a discipline that is taking on increasing importance today. Günther Vogt, with his practice in VOGT Landscape Architects and as a professor at ETH Zürich, has developed a set of tools and a working method that incorporate all the different dimensions of the human-designed environment, from the large-scale landscape to the small-scale urban public space.


Mutation and Morphosis looks at numerous aspects involved in the collective process of designing and shaping landscapes, from planning to implementation. The model as a tool and the collection as a driving force are illustrated on the basis of an astonishing variety of topics. In theoretical discussions and the examination of detailed dossiers of facts on the ground, a trajectory is traced: from the emergence of new landscapes as a result of climate change to the migration of the wolf to Central Europe, from the impact of invasive plants to the study of geological formation processes. The panorama that unfolds gives us insights into the broad context that landscape architects must consider in their work, exemplifi ed by the outstanding projects realized by VOGT.


The new publication is a collaborative project by Vogt landscape architects and Günther Vogt's chair at ETH Zurich. The book contains conversations with Katja Gentinetta and Dehlia Hannah, Chris Dercon, Roger Diener and Olafur Eliasson, as well as artistic interventions by Roni Horn and Marguerite Humeau, Julius von Bismarck, Julian Charrière, Olafur Eliasson, Andreas Greiner, Dafi Kühne and Christian Vogt.



If there is no such thing as nature as a whole, perhaps there is landscape as a cabinet of curiosities. Thereby, in the best of cases, this lack of wholeness seems to be a gain rather than a loss. What is required for this kind of reinterpretation is an attentive observer who collects the various phenomena as individual elements, relates them to each other and rearranges them. Günther Vogt is one such collector, and his cabinet of curiosities can reveal both landscapes and his approach to them.

Using a typological structure (landscape, park, square, garden,promenade, etc.), Günther Vogt describes the theoretical foundation on which the successful projects of Vogt Landscape Architects are based. In recent years they have realized international projects in Europe and the United States, including a new type of city park for the Tate Modern in London (with Herzog & de Meuron); an “all-weather garden” with great poetic power at the Hyatt Hotel in Zurich (with Meili, Peter Architekten);an indoor tropical garden for the Novartis Campus in Basel (with Diener & Diener); and the exterior spaces of the Allianz Arena in Munich (with Herzog & de Meuron). The updated edition shows the finished projects that were presented as plans in the previous edition.

The theme of paradise is presented in eight illustrated essays that are based on individual and collective activities: community gardens in Berlin, war gardens in Iraq, the prayers rugs of Muslims and eruvs, which are fences that enclose a Jewish residential area and allow the circumvention of the rule of not carrying anything on Shabbat. Other contributions are dedicated to a putative paradise to which trusting borrowers succumb or The Whole Earth Catalog, which was a kind of precursor of the Web search machines in the early 1970s. Franziska Bark Hagen and the invited authors searched for locations in which operative directives for gardening soldiers, praying Muslims and pro-active gardeners, allow the idea of paradise as the ultimate utopia of perfect living to be resurrected again in a new form.

Franziska Bark Hagen, Professur Günther Vogt, Departement Architektur, ETH Zürich

Available from Lars Müller Publishers

What are the references for designing the urban landscape? What are the archetypes of landscape in our imaginations, to which our parks and squares refer? Today, everyone of us can visit the most impressive, exotic and extreme landscapes in a split second via the World Wide Web. This fact makes the natural and sociocultural givens of a place an even more meaningful foundation for the design of authentic exterior spaces which are sustainable in terms of both ecology and content. Between the deluge of images offered by the media and the forgotten images of our own landscape history and cultural history, we must again learn to see with our own eyes.
This illustrated book shows VOGT projects of the last years, using photos by Christian Vogt who has documented the work of our office for many years.

The street has always been one of the most significant public spaces. Particularly in Asian cities, the street – not the square – remains even today the most important location for the activities of daily life. In Tokyo, the street is not merely an area for traffic, but rather space for communication and action; a space that is both lived in and enlivened.
This book shows why a metropolitan lifestyle unfolds in areas surrounding train stations and an almost provincial quality is to be found in side streets. Along with historical and urban planning analysis of the small-scale qualities of public space, one is steered directly to the street, and Tokyo is depicted from the perspective of a pedestrian through a detailed series of images.

Available from Lars Müller Publishers

Exotic trees in England and a rainforest in Zurich, a seed bank on the arctic island of Spitsbergen and urban agriculture in Tanzania, trade in old trees in China and biodiversity in Senegal. Tree Nursery. Cultivating the Urban Jungle uses the example of plant production throughout the world to demonstrate the manifold relationships that exist between human beings and nature. Numerous essays and detailed accounts examine current phenomena like desertification in the Sahel, greening projects in Shanghai and the genesis of rooftop gardens in London. Travelogues from Europe, Africa and Asia consider the role played by a range of economic and historical factors in the significant influence that tree nurseries have come to exercise on urban planning and landscape architecture.

Dominique Ghiggi, Chair of Günther Vogt, Faculty of Architecture, ETH Zurich

Available from Lars Müller Publishers

After 'Miniature and Panorama', 'Distance and Engagement', the new book by Alice Foxley, Vogt Landscape Architects, has appeared in autumn 2010.

Günther Vogt and his landscape architects have developed a radically subjective approach to landscape architecture based on 'field trips' to landscapes. The synthesis of these landscapes and its transformation into criteria for landscape architecture projects is the subject of Distance and Engagement: Walking, Thinking and Making Landscape.

Alice Foxley, 'Distance & Engagement. Walking, thinking and making landscape'
Lars Müller Publishers

The public space of the street must offer the most diverse social groups many possibilities for their uses and activities and is in turn decisively shaped by them. A comprehensive photo catalogue of these activities has been compiled from numerous photographic observations in Berlin, Shanghai, Tokyo and Zurich. Based on the collected photographic material, specific themes are singled out as examples for each city, presented in extensive picture series and reflected by the accompanying text in order to highlight four characteristic uses of public spaces and the atmosphere in the respective cities. The visually structured study also makes a comparison possible through thematic cross-references.

Jürgen Krusche, Professur Günther Vogt, Departement Architektur, ETH Zürich

Available from Lars Müller Publishers


Miniature and Panorama offers a look at projects since 2000 by the firm Vogt Landscape architects, Zurich/Munich, which is internationally active. With photographs, plans, and explanatory texts, this volume sets forth the intellectual foundation on which the projects of Vogt Landscape architects are based. In words and pictures, it describes and illuminates thirty projects, organized according to the exterior typologies of landscape, park, square, garden, cemetery, courtyard, promenade, and interior. Among them are the exterior spaces of the Allianz Arena in Munich, various projects on Novartis Campus in Basel, and the Masoala Rain Forest Hall at the Zurich Zoo.
With contributions by Olafur Eliasson, Peter Erni, Hamish Fulton, Roman Signer, Olaf Unverzart and Christian Vogt
Winner of “Best German Book Design 2006”.

The world of plants is comparable with an apparently infinitely large library of books. How else can we describe the abundant shapes, colours, sizes and smells? In everyday reality we are helped by the manageable qualities of a garden, whose contained dimensions and resources have a liberating effect. Our attention is drawn not by the totality of the plants, but by the selection. Hence a perfect garden can move us more than untouched nature. But the magic of a garden does not lie only in the accumulation of plants, for our perception of the texture of the leaves, the fragrance of the blossoms and the shadow of the trees is immediate and direct.
The book was published as a catalogue for the exhibition “About Books and Trees”, a monographic exhibition about Vogt Landscape, shown by the Architekturmuseum Basel between 27 November 2004 and 30 January 2005.