The work being produced in Australia’s landscape architecture schools is at the forefront of pushing boundaries and making new connections in the discipline, but much of it does not transcend faculty walls to be seen by a wider community. The Landscape Architecture Australia Student Prize identifies and shares the finest graduating projects produced in landscape architecture education across the country. Australian universities each nominate a student based on their end-of-year presentation. The projects are then blindly reviewed by an independent jury, which awards one student the national prize.
Among the selection of winning projects this year is a proposal for a new public park at Melbourne’s Queen Victoria Market that uses pattern to encourage new understandings of novel ecologies; a scheme for the reimagining of the economy of the Hunter Valley in a post-coal future that merges resilient viticulture, tourism and the adaptive reuse of the remnant infrastructures of the existing coal-mining industry; and an educational landscape on a tertiary campus that embraces Aboriginal agriculture as a way to tackle soil salinity issues and promote Aboriginal agency.
While the varied design approaches and expansive and multi-layered nature of the 2018 projects are impressive, the jury unanimously selected the national winner – Tasting Territory by Xingyuan Chen of RMIT University. The jury was impressed with the sheer scope and ambition of the project which grapples with intertwining issues of particular relevance in the current global situation. The project distils rigorous research into a compelling proposal that connects the human experience of food and its processes of production and consumption at the individual and domestic scales with larger territorial-scale strategies. Noteworthy for its ambitiousness, complexity and attention to detail, Tasting Territory reminds us that food and the design of our food systems can be an aesthetic, emotional and intellectual experience, as well as something purely of necessity.
National Prize winner
Tasting Territory – Xingyuan Chen, RMIT University
Adelaide Airport Cultural District – Junxiang Chen, The University of Adelaide
“Can recognizable forms of design offer framing devices to indicate the value of novel ecologies?” – Kunpeng Wang, The University of Melbourne
The Dirty Minds Project – Kaylie Salvatori, University of New South Wales
From Mines to Vines and Beyond – Ari Stein, University of Technology Sydney
ZooSubverted – Jared Thorp, Queensland University of Technology
White Rock Cultural Domain – Belinda Allwood, Deakin University
On the 2018 Landscape Student Prize jury were: Shaun Walsh (national president, Australian Institute of Landscape Architects), Ana Abram (co-founder, Amphibious Lab (UK)) and Emily Wong (editor, Landscape Architecture Australia).
The 2018 Landscape Architecture Australia Student Prize is presented by Landscape Architecture Australia magazine and LandscapeAustralia.com and supported by the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects through the provision of a complimentary AILA graduate membership for the National Prize winner.