Eric Groft Presents at Annapolis’ Four Rivers Garden Club

Oehme, van Sweden Principal Eric Groft was invited to present at the Four Rivers Garden Club of Annapolis on Tuesday, April 14 by his friend and client Carolyn Houck.

He presented The Artful Garden: Creative Inspiration for Landscape Design, authored by James van Sweden, FSLA, one of the two founders of Oehme, van Sweden and the New American Garden style of landscape architecture.

James van Sweden’s book focuses on the inspiration behind the landscape, encouraging its readers to seek inspiration in different places and situations: Specifically, in the classical arts.

From painting to music, from sculpture to dance, van Sweden focuses on the principal idea that gardens are art, not to think in terms of linear borders and flower beds, but rather an organic tapestry of matter, woven from its earthly surroundings.

His aesthetically stunning book, The Artful Garden: Creative Inspiration for Landscape Design reveals the secrets of famous gardens from around the world, focusing on their underlying creative process, bringing forth the underlying principles consistently demonstrated in Oehme, van Sweden’s work: The use of positive and negative space, of form and scale, of light and shadow, of rough and smooth textures.

Van Sweden recognizes that not all gardens are equal, rather each is a unique piece of art that serves a different purpose: Some are relaxing oases, others are active and reactive, constantly transforming, but most importantly each grants potential for surprise and wonder.

It was especially fitting that this presentation was held for the Four Rivers Garden Club – the oldest garden club in Annapolis – for although they are now 90 years old – having held their first meeting on Holly Beach Farm – once a sprawling 3000-acre property spanning from the Severn to the Magothy River, the Four Rivers Garden club strives to consistently find inspiration in new and innovative ways.

The event was coordinate by the Four Rivers Events Chairwoman Jane Hegstrom, and it was hosted in the picturesque home of Craven Engels on the Severn River in Annapolis, MD. Attendees included Nancy Bennet, Martha Boyd, Mary Jo Dickinson, Pat Edwards, Judy Post, Janet Ross, Bonnie van Sciver-Steele and Lisa Sherwood.