In his introduction to an issue of the Architectural Review back in September 1989, Peter Davey wrote: 'One of the great failings of the High Modern Movement was that it valued gardens so little.' Looking for contemporary examples that showed a change of heart and priorities, Davey highlighted Peter Aldington's garden at Turn End, Haddenham, in Buckinghamshire (pictured above). Sensitively fusing the tectonic and the horticultural, it was integral to the trio of houses that Aldington built there in the 1960s. 'This group has become a classic of its time and genre, ' said Davey.
Almost 20 years later, that judgement has surely been confirmed. Aldington's own house is now Grade II*-listed, while the garden has continued to ourish and develop, with the Turn End Trust looking to its long-term future.
Jane Brown's book A Garden and Three Houses tells the story well, but on Sunday 8 July (2.00-5.30pm) there's a chance to see for yourself, as Aldington is opening both house and garden to the public. A trip here is always a pleasure. Details from turnend. peter@macunlimited. net, tel. 01844 291383.
The rapport between building and landscape is also key to one of Niall McLaughlin Architects' early projects, a zoomorphic studio for a photographer on the reedy fringe of a Northamptonshire pond. Until 7 July, it features in a show called Unfinished at Photofusion, 17a Electric Lane, Brixton, in which McLaughlin focuses on the role of photography in his teaching and practice ( www. photofusion. org).
It seems to be multi-faceted: a generative tool, which goes hand in hand with model-making in the development of project; a medium of record, capturing moments in construction where, as McLaughlin neatly puts it, 'the impermanence of the situation does not diminish the strength of the eeting spaces and forms'; and a way of exploring the 'unfinished' nature of architecture, its life after completion (the same window seen in 1993 and 2007). With the spirit of enquiry that pervades this exhibition comes a welcome emphasis on collaboration, not the architect's ego, which extends to the practice's new project for a church in Peckham.