@Dumbarton Oaks

Collection MS.GL.002 - Contemporary Landscape Design Collection, 2001-2009

Balmori, Diana Haag, Richard Hasegawa, Hiroki Herman, Ron Johanson, Patricia Jordan, Lorna Lassus, Bernard Mitani, Toru Nakamura, Yoshio Tacha, Athena Van Valkenburgh, Michael Yu, Kongjian

Identity area

Reference code



Contemporary Landscape Design Collection, 2001-2009


  • 2001-2009 (Creation)
  • 1960s-2000s (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

Approximately 75 boxes of documents and 15 rolls of oversize materials, both originals and reproductions
Approximately 200 CDs and DVDs

Context area

Name of creator

Dumbarton Oaks (1940-Present)

Administrative history

Robert and Mildred Bliss retired to their Georgetown home, Dumbarton Oaks, in 1933. They began adding to their already extensive collection of artwork and reference books, anticipating the creation of a research institute. In 1940, the Blisses gave their property to Harvard University, creating Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection.

"Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection is an institute in Washington, DC, administered by the Trustees for Harvard University. It supports research and learning internationally in Byzantine, Garden and Landscape, and Pre-Columbian studies through fellowships and internships, meetings, and exhibitions. Located in residential Georgetown, Dumbarton Oaks welcomes researchers at all career stages who come to study its books, objects, images, and documents. It opens its doors to the public to visit its historic Gardens, designed by Beatrix Farrand; its Museum, with world-class collections of art; and its Music Room, for lectures and concerts. The institute disseminates knowledge through its own publications (such as Dumbarton Oaks Papers and symposium volumes) as well as through the Dumbarton Oaks Medieval Library (published by Harvard University Press). Dumbarton Oaks also makes accessible ever more of its resources freely online." -http://www.doaks.org/about

Among its many other activities, in January of 1963, Dumbarton Oaks and the trustees of Harvard University assumed all fieldwork activities formerly initiated by the Byzantine Institute. The Dumbarton Oaks fieldwork committee directed and sponsored new fieldwork projects in Turkey (Church of St. Polyeuktos), Cyprus (Church of the Panagia Amasgou at Monagri), Syria (Dibsi Faraj), and present-day Macedonia (Bargala).

Archival history

The accumulation dates (2001-2009) for this collection represents when the collection was formed and acquired by the Garden and Landscape Studies department from each designers.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The collection was physically transferred from the Garden and Landscape Studies department to the Image Collections and Fieldwork Archives in 2009.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The Contemporary Landscape Design Collection (CLDC) was formed under the direction of the Garden and Landscape Studies department at Dumbarton Oaks between 2001 and 2009, and is intended as a complement to the existing collection of drawings by Beatrix Farrand in the Rare Book Collection. Michel Conan, Director of Garden and Landscape Studies, initiated the project and served as Curator of the CLDC. From 2001-2009, Xin Wu, Coordinator of East Asian Garden Studies, served as Assistant Curator of CLDC and administered the collection.

The collection focuses on a select group of contemporary landscape designers from around the world and a selection of their most significant projects. Materials were selected with the goal of illuminating each designer's design process, including preliminary studies, documentation of the design period, documentation of the finished product, and finally, the project’s evolution. Drawn from the files kept by contemporary landscape architects and garden designers in their own offices and private archives, the collection includes sketches, drawings, plans, images, and other documentation for a number of selected projects. In addition to the project documentation, each designer in the collection has a dossier containing essential information about his or her history, writings, etc.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

The collection is divided into thirteen (13) series for each designer, filed alphabetically by surname. Within each designer's series, materials are generally grouped by project.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Each series within this collection was acquired from a different designer. Thus, the terms of access and use varies for each series. Please consult the "Conditions governing access" field within each series record describing the designer's materials for the terms specific to that collection of material. For more information or for access to a particular series, please consult ICFA staff.

Conditions governing reproduction

Each series within this collection was acquired from a different designer. Thus, the copyright status varies for each series. Please consult the "Conditions governing reproduction" field within each series record describing the designer's materials for the terms specific to that collection of material, including contact information for copyright holders.

Language of material

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

Finding aids

For preliminary inventories for individual designers and a complete finding aid for Bernard Lassus, see each series record for this collection.

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

Existence and location of copies

Related units of description

Notes area

Access points

Place access points

Name access points

Description control area

Description identifier


Institution identifier


Rules and/or conventions used

Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS)



Level of detail





Archivist's note

The collection was incompletely processed by Xin Wu, Assistant Curator for Contemporary Landscape Design Collection, between 2001-2009.

Rights area

Related right





Start date

End date

Rights holder

Rights note(s)

Preferred Citation: Contemporary Landscape Design Collection, 2001-2009, MS.GL.002, Image Collections and Fieldwork Archives, Dumbarton Oaks, Trustees for Harvard University, Washington, D.C.



Related right





Start date

End date

Rights holder

Rights note(s)

Copyright status for materials varies by individual designer. Check the Conditions of access and use area within each designer's series record, or consult the ICFA Manager.



Copyright status

Under copyright

Copyright status date

Copyright jurisdiction

Copyright note

Accession area