Corobrik Landscape Architecture Award celebrates ideas on transformative water use
As a way to encourage innovative ideas that motivate social cohesion and environmentally-responsible habitation, Corobrik presents an annual first and second-place award to graduating students in the UCT Master of Landscape Architecture programme. This year, Corobrik Most Innovative Final Year Landscape Architecture Award went to Josephine Dalberg with Amber Myers taking the second-place prize at the awards’ ceremony held on Friday, 22 November.
Corobrik Commercial Director, Musa Shangase, commented on the elevated level of design reflected by this year’s graduating class: “South Africa has so much architectural talent and this is evident by the extensively-researched dissertations produced this year. Through landscape architecture, we are able to bring aesthetically enhanced spaces as well as socially cohesive designs to the various communities within the country. We, at Corobrik, believe that ‘better starts here’ and, when it comes to landscape architecture, better starts with these award-winning ideas.”
Shangase said it was also incredible to see the creative incorporation of Corobrik popular clay paver range into the designs: “The realisation of these designs is not merely about form and function; it’s about creating a legacy that tell the story of our society to future generations. The durability, aesthetics and environmental benefits of Corobrik pavers ensure these legacy-defining structures will remain.”
This year’s winner of Corobrik Landscape Architecture Award was a thesis entitled ‘A River Remembered: reconnecting to landscape, memory and resource through water routes’. It investigates the possibility of re-routing an existing concrete water channel, or leiwater, allowing residents from a disadvantaged community to access water for food gardens and the greening of their environment.
“The concept focuses on the historical relationships between people and the landscape,” explained Dalberg. “Having always had an interest in the Cederberg area, I decided to focus on Clanwilliam which is the area’s oldest town and the gateway to the region.”
The existing water channel currently bypasses an RDP community situated on the periphery of the town. This water, from the Jan Dissels River, is instead piped into the town centre where it is revealed in an open leiwater. Through her dissertation, Dalberg seeks to re-route this water to include the RDP community, democratising this important resource.
“This will create the opportunity for developing both household and community gardens, as well as sites of social engagement between the RDP community and the town centre,” concluded Dalberg.
The runner-up, Amber Myers, titled her thesis ‘Perceiving Landscape: Designing for the Contemplation of Material Culture through Time’. For this interesting concept, Myers suggested constructing a coastal park and archaeological museum on the Point of Mossel Bay, using materials harvested from buildings which will be submerged by the rising ocean over time.
“The things we build, and what we build them from, say who we are,” explained Myers. “The park encourages reflection on how the layers of human culture and development have changed the landscape over time, and how we can do so more responsibly in the future.”
All graduating students in the UCT Master of Landscape Architecture programme are eligible for Corobrik’s Most Innovative Final Year Landscape Architecture Award. This year’s first-place recipient was awarded R8 000 in prize money with the runner-up taking home R6 000.
Banner images: (1) Josephine Dalberg is this year’s winner of the Corobrik’s Landscape Architecture Award. Her thesis is entitled ‘A River Remembered: reconnecting to landscape, memory and resource through water routes’. It investigates the possibility of re-routing an existing concrete water channel, or leiwater, allowing residents from a disadvantaged community to access water for food gardens and the greening of their environment.
(2) Josephine Dalberg is pictured with (left) Allin Dangers Director of Sales Western Cape and (right) Werner Oelofse of Corobrik are pictured with the winner Josephine Dalberg