Beatrix Farrand was one of America’s most celebrated landscape architects renowned for private gardens and consulting work for some of the country’s most prestigious universities and colleges, recieving more than 200 commissions over her long and distinguished career. A handful of her landscapes remain intact today, notably Dumbarton Oaks, the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Garden, and the old campus at Princeton University. Garland Farm was her last home and garden, where she lived from 1955 until her death in 1959. The Beatrix Farrand Society, located at Garland Farm, was founded in June 2003, as a nonprofit Maine corporation, to foster the art and science of horticulture and landscape design, with emphasis on the life and work of Beatrix Farrand.
The BFS focus for the centennial celebration of Acadia National Park will be the ANP carriage roads and Beatrix Farrand’s role, in collaboration with John D. Rockefeller Jr, in their development. Our effort to inform and educate the public about Farrand’s role will have multiple facets, beginning with a monograph providing context for Farrand’s work on the carriage roads through an overview of her body of work, including the Eyrie, Rockefeller’s estate in Seal Harbor. The approach Farrand and Rockefeller took to facilitate their collaboration will be discussed and include archived notes and correspondence, as will be Farrand’s approach to the planting design for the carriage roads, from framing views through a sequence of views and alternatively screening selected views and her approach to enhancing roadsides and bridges as, of course, seen from a carriage. The monograph will conclude with a description of the impact on the carriage road landscape of the 1947 fire on Mount Desert Island and the importance of a present day restoration of the carriage road views and plantings as originally designed by Beatrix Farrand. An exhibition with the monograph and related research as its foundation, as well as, a corresponding lecture as part of our summer program series are also planned.
Update December 2016: The monograph, The Public Spirited Beatrix Farrand of Mount Desert Island by Roxanne Brouse, can now be purchased online at https://www.beatrixfarrandsocietyshop.org/.