Art Conservation 125:   

                 Preserving Cultural Landscapes

                 Spring 2016

                 Eric Doehne


Landscape is history made visible.

It is place, permanent position in both the

social and topographical sense,

that gives us our identity.

– J.B. Jackson, 1909-1996




The trouble with Oakland is that when you get there,

there isn't any there there.

– Gertrude Stein, 1874 - 1946



Course Description


This course addresses environmental and conservation issues related to the preservation of diverse cultural landscapes, including historic gardens, cemeteries, battlefields, college campuses, industrial and agricultural landscapes.


Sites such as Versailles, Gettysburg, Hadrian’s Wall and the Yorkshire Dales have done much to expand earlier definitions of cultural heritage as only art, architecture, archeology and archives into something larger and more complex. All of these landscapes evoke a sense of place and a sense of time. They are worthy of our attention, understanding, and protection from an unfortunately wide range of threats. The UK is a particularly strong role model when evaluating landscape case studies that deal with threats ranging from the loss of craft skills, a changing climate, or too many tourists. This course provides a framework to investigate past cultural landscapes, document the present, and consider efforts to ensure a future for these fragile places. In 2090 how will we value the role of place, use, continuity, and meaning in the landscape, a time as distant from now as we are from 1940? Field trips will demonstrate aspects of the historic cultural landscape of Scripps College and adjacent historic neighborhoods. This interdisciplinary course navigates the progress and challenges of the field of Cultural Landscape Preservation.