Over many years our work has addressed the co-evolution of biodiversity and cultural diversity most often, though not always, at watershed scale. Work often begins when we perceive an anomaly in the environment that is the result of opposing beliefs or contradictory metaphors. These moments, in which reality no longer appears seamless and the cost of belief has become outrageous, offer the opportunity to create new spaces, first in the mind and thereafter in everyday life.
Our methodology emerges from the interaction of our beliefs. We believe that every place is telling the story of its own becoming. This story results from the processes of everyday life, emerging from a complex conversation carried on at many levels–physical and biological as well as social and political, economic, and, aesthetic or, in rare cases, compassionate.
We believe that the cultural landscape, in all of its dimensions, is the outcome, in physical terms, of this conversation–mostly determined, or guided, or forced, by the dominant culture or ensemble of cultures in a place. Further, we see ourselves as embedded in this cultural landscape, and responsible, as is everyone else, in some manner for its well-being.
We believe that the urgency of the moment must be at play in any act of social change that comes about in a conflicted situation and is not simply the normal morphology of time. Most works that have been successful in some measure have engaged and argued for transformation in a perceived extremely urgent situation.
Our methodology for problem-solving takes a variety of forms, it is designed to address, infect, invade, transform, and expand planning processes. The basic terms of our work are quite simple: to be invited, to be networked, to let a vision emerge for transformation of place if it wishes to, to be non-possessive, and to always insist that whoever pays us or engages with us understands that our fundamental client is the cultural landscape itself, as best we, with the help of many, can perceive it.
Over many years our work has addressed the co-evolution of biodiversity and cultural diversity most often, though not always, at watershed scale. To begin, we find the boundaries of the watershed, look for emerging patterns, and then often focus on the condition of the river. This process has been followed for the Sava River in the former Yugoslavia, for the Mulde River as it flows into the Elbe in Germany and as it begins in the little Floha Mulde watershed at the Border of the Czech Republic. And for the watershed of the Touch River as it flows through farmland and city into the Garonne River in France, and for the Oder River as it flows down from the Czech Republic through Poland and into Germany, among others. We have proposed a genetic diffusion system for the complex watershed of the Rhine and we are doing one for the Santa Fe watershed in New Mexico. We have spent considerable time pondering boundary conditions for the Green Heart of Holland, which are alternately accepted (in part or in whole) or are rejected, depending on the government in power. We have proposed for the natural purification of the headwaters of most of the rivers in Europe by restoring the forest, meadow, and grasslands of the high grounds, in a work entitled Peninsula Europe supported by the European Union and the Deutsche Bundes Umwelt Stiftung, the Schweisfurth-Stiftung, Munich, as well as foundations and museums, and galleries in four countries, so far. Always the strategy has been to impact the planning processes in a region, as the cultural landscape is so often formed by them.