The Cultural Landscape Foundation Launches New Pioneers Video Oral History With Acclaimed Landscape Architect Richard Haag

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The Cultural Landscape Foundation Launches New Pioneers Video Oral History With Acclaimed Landscape Architect Richard Haag

The Cultural Landscape Foundation Launches New Pioneers Video Oral History With Acclaimed Landscape Architect Richard Haag
May 28, 2014


Media Contact: Nord Wennerstrom | T: 202.255.7076 | E:

Haag Project is the 11th in the ongoing Pioneers Video Oral History series that documents, collects, and preserves first-hand information from pioneering landscape architects/educators

Washington, DC (May 28, 2014) – The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) today announced the launch of a new Pioneers of American Landscape Design® video oral history with acclaimed landscape architect and educator Richard Haag, one of the nation’s most important Postwar landscape architects. This is the 11th in the Pioneers series, which TCLF launched in 2003 to document, collect, and preserve first-hand information from pioneering landscape architects/educators and the first to chronicle a Pacific Northwest practitioner. Haag, in practice for more than 50 years, is esteemed for his innovative design solutions that balance environmental, ecological and cultural values at Bloedel Reserve on Bainbridge Island, Washington, Seattle’s Gas Works Park, a formal industrial site, and numerous other locations.

The project documents Haag’s life and career from his arrival in the late 1950s to found and teach in the landscape architecture department at the University of Washington to the present. He worked with the two towering practitioners in the field from the last half of the 20th century, Dan Kiley and Lawrence Halprin (the latter also the subject of a Pioneers oral history), his notable students include Grant and Ilze Jones, and Laurie Olin (also the subject of a Pioneers oral history), and his career is rich in activism and commitment to innovative design solutions. Always a captivating storyteller, Haag shares recollections about his education, friendships and travels with seminal educators, Stan White and Hideo Sasaki. Among his many recollections are stories of his work with Victor Steinbrueck and the “Friends of the Market” to save Pike Place Market and the subsequent design of Victor Steinbrueck Park; the evolution behind his revolutionary design for Seattle’s Gas Works Park; and his years of collaboration with Prentice Bloedel to create a series of contemplative and spiritual spaces at Bloedel Reserve. Videotaping was completed in the spring of 2013. The goal of this ongoing series, thrice supported with grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, is to make these practitioners’ stories available to future generations of stewards, designers, researchers and heritage travelers.

“Rich Haag is in the pantheon of great Postwar landscape architects and a vital connection between so many other important practitioners,” said Charles A. Birnbaum, TCLF’s Founder and President. “He is also an innovative designer, an esteemed teacher and mentor, and a leading environmental conscience of the landscape architecture profession.”

Each oral history consists of approximately twenty-five richly produced video clips running from three to five minutes each in length and organized under the themes of biography, design, and projects. Past oral history subjects include M. Paul Friedberg, Carol R. Johnson, Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, and James van Sweden. In 2010, the American Society of Landscape Architects presented the series with the highest honor in the Communication's Category, the Award of Excellence.

Filming and production is by Tom Fox, an award-winning photographer, a Principal and Director of Imaging and Media Services for all of the SWA Group offices in Sausalito, Laguna Beach, San Francisco and Los Angeles, California; Houston and Dallas, Texas; and Shanghai, China. Over the past two decades, Fox, who oversees the firm's film and digital archives, has documented hundreds of SWA projects in both the U.S. and abroad. Fox also shot the oral histories for Cornelia Oberlander and Lawrence Halprin. His work has appeared in more than 100 publications around the world.

Post-production is by Gina Angelone, an award-winning filmmaker and Emmy-nominee, who is in her fifth collaboration with TCLF. Angelone has written and directed feature length documentaries - René & I (2005) and It's Better To Jump (2013) – was producer of Bravo’s Inside the Actor’s Studio, produced live Broadway shows for the Disney Channel, and has written, produced and directed television commercials and large-scale media presentations for Fortune 500 corporations. Her first project with TCLF was the documentary Connections: Preserving America's Landscape Legacy, which aired on PBS stations nationwide and for which she was writer, producer and director. Her most recent work with TCLF includes oral histories with Shlomo Aronson, Joe Yamada and Laurie Olin.

The Haag oral history was made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts Art Works Program, the Hubbard Educational Foundation, the Washington Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architecture, the Pauline & Edgar Stern Foundation, the Maria & Robert Kelly Stewardship and dozens of others. The American Society of Landscape Architects is the Educational Partner.

About The Cultural Landscape Foundation
The Cultural Landscape Foundation (TCLF) is a 16-year-old 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation that provides people with the ability to see, understand and value landscape architecture and its practitioners, in the way many people have learned to do with buildings and their designers. Through its Web site, lectures, outreach and publishing, TCLF broadens the support and understanding for cultural landscapes nationwide to help safeguard our priceless heritage for future generations. TCLF makes a special effort to heighten the awareness of those who impact cultural landscapes, assist groups and organizations working to increase the appreciation and recognition of cultural landscapes, and develop educational tools for young people to better connect them to their cultural landscape environs.