Designed Landscapes

Saturday, April 30, 2005 to Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Church Exhibition Gallery, Lyman Plant House

A Smith College Alumnae Exhibit

Smith is preeminent in the study of landscape, from its distinguished alumnae, to its campus resources. Smith students began studying plant science in 1875, and by the 1880s, were studying in the first science building at a women’s college.

In 1893, Frederick Law Olmsted laid out the campus as an arboretum, providing an outdoor laboratory for the study of horticulture and landscape. Beginning in 1914, Smith women were offered studios in landscape architecture. In 1932, Smith partnered with the Cambridge School to provide women with graduate level studies in landscape architecture taught by Harvard University faculty. But in 1942, Harvard began to accept women into the Graduate School of Design and the Cambridge School closed its doors. Despite no official landscape architecture program at Smith since that time, many alumnae have gone on to study and practice landscape architecture and garden design.

Smith is the first liberal arts college in the country to launch a program in landscape studies. In 2002, the Mellon Foundation funded the first faculty hire. This year, the curriculum was expanded to include the first landscape studies studio. Supporting the Landscape Studies Program is the curriculum for the study of the built environment, the most comprehensive at a liberal arts college. Contributing programs include American Studies, Architecture, Art History, Biological Sciences, Comparative Literature, Engineering, Environmental Science and Policy, and Urban Studies.

This exhibition has been organized to celebrate the new Landscape Studies Program and to recognize the contributions of alumnae in landscape architecture and garden design.

See the exhibit.