Welcome to the GVAG Blog

I have used the 23-ring binders made by Semikolon, a German company, ever since I discovered them. Unfortunately I can no longer get these binders in Canada.

A Recklessly Record-less Year

For the last sixteen years I’ve kept a record of what happens each year in the garden. I’ve conscientiously photographed each project I’ve undertaken, each border as it changed from season to season, each modification I made or was thinking about making. I’ve stuck these photographs into albums and written comments —  about my intentions for a project, or the weather, what I…

Read more
A small stream marks the boundary between the field and the woods beyond.

A Doorstep for Orin’s Sugarcamp

On the weekend we installed the granite slab that marks the ‘front door’ of Orin’s Sugarcamp, my latest art installation at Glen Villa. (You can read about the project here.) Doing this was tricky. It involved transporting an 800-pound slab of rock across a snowy field and a partially frozen stream on the back of an open wagon. That takes…

Read more
We cleaned up this section in the woods for the first time about ten years ago. I

When Less is More

Is less more? I associate the familiar phrase with Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, one of the founders of modern architecture and a proponent of simplicity of style. But when I went to confirm this, I found to my surprise that the phrase was first used in print in Andrea del Sarto, a poem by…

Read more
A grassy meadow abuts a busy Montreal street.

Melvin Charney’s Garden in the City

Melvin Charney’s garden made for the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal is firmly and unequivocally a city garden. It is surrounded by traffic on all sides, rising up from a piece of land lost between the entry and exit ramps of a busy expressway. It is composed of elements found in many gardens — plants,…

Read more
Cognito, by William Carlson

Orin’s Sugarcamp

Just over a year ago I began work on a project in the woods at Glen Villa, my garden in Quebec. I was inspired by an exhibition I saw at The Mount, Edith Wharton’s home in western Massachusetts. One piece in particular caught my eye, a collection of oddly shaped pieces of wood that contrasted in…

Read more