The Easel

Archives: The Economist

6th August 2019

The variegated symbolism of gardens in art

Everyone enjoys a garden. A Berlin show intrudes on such happy thoughts, suggesting gardens have a “rich metaphoric ambiguity”. Tranquility is achieved by the exclusion of others. The ubiquitous lawn is “imperious in its consumption of space and resources”, troubling at a time of climate change. Gardens show how humans see their place in nature, for better or for worse.