UNDER THE SKY - Experiencing Landscape Architecture

Minor code: BK-MI-194

Language: English

Participating institutions: Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment

Maximum participants: 30

Education methods: Excursions, lectures, analysis exercises, workshop and design studio


The 15 ECs minor UNDER THE SKY - Experiencing Landscape Architecture gives insight into the field of landscape architecture through the lens of multi-sensory experience. Empirical research, observations on site and experimental analysis will be combined with established analysis methods. These analysis methods will be interwoven with design and construction, connected by their focus on the experience of landscape.  Sensorial and kinaesthetic experience of place on one hand, and the dynamics and challenges related to water, vegetation, light and wind on the other hand are the basic understandings the minor deals with. How can you identify and evaluate different qualities of the site? How can sensorial, routing and place experience inform a landscape architectonical transformation in a moment of urgent environmental challenges? What landscape architectonical design instruments can be used? What are the relations between users and the landscape? All these issues will be condensed in a temporary installation on site, as a concise response to analysis, lectures, discussions and design process.

For whom?

  • The minor is intended for academic students from architecture, landscape architecture, urbanism, industrial design, geography and other studies related to the topic of landscape. Also students in HBO education can enroll for the minor.
  • You must have affection for design as may be expected from your respective expertise and bachelor programme.
  • For students who are not from Delft University of Technology, a separate selection procedure applies. After applying as described on the minor website you will receive an e-mail in which you will be asked to submit a portfolio and cv. After receiving your portfolio you will be informed whether you are officially enrolled or not.

What will you learn?

At the end of the minor you:

  • are able to identify and analyse tangible as well as intangible qualities of landscape
  • have a basic understanding of how landscape design can make tangible and intangible qualities expressive as a basis of environmental awareness
  • have a basic understanding of how landscape design can address current environmental issues like climate change, water issues, public realm versus private activities
  • have a basic  understanding of landscape design, the relation between scales and between levels of abstraction: from concept to materialisation; from inventory ‘in situ’ to constructive analyses; from analyses to concepts, to design to construction.

Course overview

The minor is offered in quarter 1 and consists of two interconnected courses: Under the sky - Experiencing Landscape Architecture (experimental and experiential analyses) and Parkscape - Designing Experiences in a time of climate change (design project). Site visits and fieldwork will unveil knowledge and stimulate a constructive analysis process, which will serve as input for the design project, whereas the design project raises questions, which will serve as basis for exploration and analysis.

Under the sky | Fieldwork (BK7361 – 10 ECs) 
During this course, experimental analysis methods with a narrative approach will be introduced. The qualities of the site will be explored through transects, drifts, interviews, participation of the user, and building experiments. Your own experience is the starting point for a multi-layered analysis of the site. The understanding of spatial-visual tools—like sightlines, panoramas and serial visions—, multi-sensory perception, and experimental mapping methods—involving user participation and narrative techniques—will be stimulated. The main focus is the change through time: natural processes, movement through space, spatial transformations, and ephemeral qualities. 

Finally, you will extract from your own project an essential/conclusive element which will be built on site as a temporary installation, focusing on multi-sensory perception. The design you are developing in ‘Parkscape’ will be discussed and reviewed in order to synthesise it in a built artefact on 1:1 scale. Aspects that will be addressed are the process of building with your own hands in relation to drawing and speculating on paper, the relation between abstract concepts and concrete artefacts and possible interaction with public. The artefact may be understood in a broad sense and could be a built element, a film, an act, a landmark, or a transformation of existing elements. 

Parkscape | Designing experiences in a time of climate change (BK7362 – 5 ECs)
In the design project ‘Parkscape’ you will apply and test the knowledge and insights acquired during lectures on contemporary environmental issues and contemporary landscape architectonic solutions, the fieldwork and desk analysis. ‘Parkscape’ is a design intervention in an existing park in the context of climate change, addressing and integrating two domains:

  • Programme: the increasing demand of space for water in the city and polder landscape; the notion of the public realm versus private activities; the understanding of natural processes, vegetation succession and green blue networks.
  • Experience: experiences of nature, space and place, making the intangible and emotional aspects of landscape expressive, and creating a narrative through the use of materials, spatial sequences, natural processes, the design of routings, etc. 

For more specific information about the courses, please visit the study guide


Dr.ir. Saskia de Wit

Students about this minor:

"Not only spatial composition, sight lines, routes are important in a landscape architectonical design but also the experience as a connection between users and spatial design is crucial. This minor has also made me understand how soil, landscape types and vegetation can influence a design. All those aspects have a great influence on the end result; you should introduce them in the design at an early stage.''

- Kjell Wansleeben, Bouwkunde – TUDelft
" I have experienced the minor Landscape Architecture as a very instructive, versatile minor in which I have been able to develop further my design qualities in a creative environment. The minor offers both; analysis and design exercises in a good mix, I thought. It makes the course fun and educational at the same time.”

- Florian Fakkert