January 03 2013

Matthew Traucht: A Farewell to Global Site Plans and The Grid

Matthew TrauchtGlobal Site Plans has been an important part of my development as a writer and I am proud for having had the chance to work with Renée van Staveren and the crew there. My work as a master’s candidate at the University of Minnesota has exposed me to many of the issues that I wrote about: Brownfield remediation, contested spaces, and cultural landscapes are typical discussions in my program. Writing for Global Site Plans provided me the opportunity to more deeply understand these local issues.

As a designer, I’m doing my best to understand what makes “place” functional and beautiful or dysfunctional and unpleasant.  Knowing the history of a place certainly helps inform that process. Given that we all seem to have so little time these days, the blog format of The Grid is useful for learning about a space and comprehending its character in a few short moments.

I’ve always been interested in writing about collective and individual experiences in our cultural landscapes.  My own blog Desire Lines has been more about my experience as a graduate student than about my impressions of my surroundings. Writing for The Grid has helped me develop the skills to translate design research into accessible, concise, and timely writing.

Belonging to the Global Site Plans community has helped expose me to many important issues in the environmental design field. The diversity of authors and subjects available on The Grid provides the reader a wealth of knowledge. The focus on social media is a valuable component to the work Renée and her team is involved in and has helped me understand the process of self-promotion.  Given my background and continued interest in international design, being a part of the Global Site Plans community is especially gratifying.

My six-month internship is now coming to a close.  My final semester as a graduate student will overwhelm my time as I develop my design skills and approach my capstone involving monumental ancient landscape architecture in Ohio.  Some of what I learned at The Grid—being concise, articulate, and timely—will surely help my immediate and not too distant future as a designer and writer.  Thank you for the opportunity Global Site Plans.

Matthew Traucht

Matthew Traucht graduated from the University of New Mexico with a B.A. in cultural anthropology and is now pursuing his Master of Landscape Architecture at the University of Minnesota’s College of Design. Inspired by the work he was doing as an archaeologist in New Mexico where he studied prehistoric lifeways and preindustrial agricultural techniques; Matthew established an organic farm business. Eventually this led him to join the US Peace Corps where he served as a Natural Resources Volunteer in The Gambia from 2007-2009. For the last five years he has been blogging about some of his observations about the interactions between nature and culture, most recently on Desire Lines. Now, as a graduate student, Matthew is interested in sustainable communities, brownfield remediation, and historic cultural landscape preservation.

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This entry was posted on Thursday, January 3rd, 2013 at 3:00 pm and is filed under Environmental Design, History/Preservation, Landscape Architecture. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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