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Garden and Landscape Studies Symposium

"Sound and Scent in the Garden" | May 9 and 10, 2014
Garden and Landscape Studies Symposium

"Allegory of the Sense of Smell," ca. 1618, Jan Brueghel I and Peter Paul Rubens. Museo del Prado.

Sensory perception is the theme of the 2014 Dumbarton Oaks symposium in Garden and Landscape Studies. While we often approach gardens as things to be seen, thus engaging the rational, intellectual part of the human brain, Sound and Scent in the Garden explores the more elusive experiences of sound and smell. These senses have a powerful effect on the human body and are important dimensions of garden design and performance, but they are also ephemeral and can be difficult to study. The papers in the symposium explore the ways that the historical experience of sound and scent can be recovered, and explain the meaning of those senses for landscape design, past and present.

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