Ken Smith is one of the best-known of a generation of landscape architects equally at home in the worlds of art, architecture, and urbanism. Trained in both design and the fine arts, he explores the relationship between art, contemporary culture, and landscape. His practice, Workshop: Ken Smith Landscape Architect, was established in 1992 and is based in New York City.
He is committed to creating landscapes, especially parks and other public spaces, as a way of improving the quality of urban life. Much of his work pushes beyond traditional landscape typologies—plaza, street, and garden—to landscapes that draw on diverse cultural traditions and influences of the contemporary urban landscape. Smith’s approach is directed at projects of varying scales and types: temporary installations, private residential gardens, public spaces, parks, and commercial projects. With a particular emphasis on projects that explore the symbolic content and expressive power of landscape as an art form, the Workshop specializes in the investigation of new expressions in landscape design.
Ken Smith is a graduate of Iowa State University and the Harvard University Graduate School of Design. He has taught and lectured at Harvard, the City College of New York, and other universities and institutions around the world. Smith’s work has been published widely in the popular and trade press.