Since 2015, CSLA has the Canadian Landscape Charter, a document that lays out our profession’s values and principles in a high level, overarching manner. It tells the story of who we are and what we believe in. It also provides the opportunity for each region and member component in Canada to tailor these values and principles to meet their needs at a more detailed scale, reflecting local and regional perspectives about the landscape.
As a profession, and on a personal level, we have an attachment to our landscapes; some large and vast like mountains and prairies or never-ending shorelines, others more pedestrian in scale could be your street café or a backyard. A tiny leaf emerging from a crack in the sidewalk may give you a strong sense of connection and a sense of well-being. There is a hard to translate German word, Heimat, which refers to a sense of belonging attached to one’s home village. Let’s venture to say that we need a strong word that refers to a sense of belonging to the landscape, and we hope one day we will find one, or create one. In the meantime, we can recognize that our natural and manmade landscapes help define us, are an intrinsic part of who we are, and how we live…
In support of the Canadian Landscape Charter, the Canadian Landscapes Portfolio editions aim t visually documenting the landscapes we have a close relationship with: the beautiful, soulful, plebeian, fun and thought provoking landscapes that define who we are as a country, a profession, and as individuals.
Carol Craig, Advocacy Task Force Chair