Colour sets the theme for SGD Conference

Speakers from across the globe will explore the use of colour in the garden at the Society of Garden Designers (SGD) Conference, to be held at the Royal Geographical Society, London, on Saturday 18th July, 2020.

The theme of the Spring Conference will focus on how good use of colour can play a major role in the success of a garden or landscape project. ‘Colour: the art, science and experience’ will feature experts from across the fields of landscape architecture, garden design, planting design and science, to explain the profound effects colour can have on our mind and mood and how the right use of colour in a garden can change our perception of the space and how we use it.

Speakers will include American landscape architect Steve Martino,(pictured left) British garden designer Emily Erlam, Jimi Blake, from Hunting Brook Gardens in County Wicklow and plantsman Jimi Blake. From Canada, Claude Cormier will join the conference to explain why he believes landscapes should be more assertive and unconventional while Mike Allaby will join the line-up with a talk entitled ‘Why is the World Colourful?’

From the USA, Steve Martino will draw on examples from his pioneering work within the desert landscape of Arizona, to explain how he juxtaposes desert vegetation with boldly coloured architectural structures to create his vivid landscape designs and how his love for the desert inspires his work.

For almost 20 years plantsman Jimi Blake has been rewriting the rules on combining plants at his Hunting Brook Gardens in Co. Wicklow. At the SGD Spring Conference, he will focus on the colour combinations of flowers and foliage, revealing how he creates tapestries of colour throughout the exotic areas, perennial beds and woodland gardens.

Emily Erlam (pictured right) will explain how she weaves the physical elements of a space – the buildings – with her emotional response to it, to design gardens that are harmonious, uplifting and beautiful.

Mike Allaby is the author of more than 100 books on plant science with a background in environmental science over 50 years. He will introduce the often curious reasons as to how and why colour is perceived in the gardens and landscapes that surround us, from a scientific perspective.

Claud Cormier’s talk ‘Colour is not a Decoration‘ will explain how he draws inspiration from visual art and advertising rather than nature, using examples of his projects, renowned for being big, bright and saturated with colour, to illustrate how he plays with scale and a sense of the unexpected to create spaces that combine art and landscape.

The conference will be chaired by Stephanie Mahon, editor of the Garden Design Journal, who will examine how colour is expressed and how it changes its nature depending on how it is consumed – either through paint on a canvas, ink on a page, pixels on a screen or through light in your garden.

Discounted early bird tickets are available until 14th March, 2020. Visit the SGD website to read more and book tickets online.

The SGD Spring Conference 2020, will once again be available via a live-streaming and on-demand service allowing the SGD to share the experience with as many members as possible. Details will be available on the SGD website before the conference.

Picture credits: Banner: credit ©Steve Martino, and picture centre above Steve Martino