Tour Arthur Erickson’s Garden

Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

Talk about a hidden gem! This summer, tours will be given of Arthur Erickson’s garden, a secret oasis designed by the late, great architect.

Erickson designed everything from Robson Square and the SFU quad to condos, temples, libraries, office buildings, and hotels — and they’re all some of the most recognizable structures in Vancouver, and across Canada.

Erickson's Waterfall Building

Tour Arthur Erickson’s Garden

Behind a simple cedar gate in Vancouver’s Point Grey neighbourhood is Erickson’s most delicate design accomplishment, a tranquil realm where he resided for over 50 years. The Arthur Erickson Foundation is inviting Vancouver residents and visitors to view this quiet, shady oasis.

Where: 4195 W 14th Ave, Point Grey
When: 4:00pm on the first and third Thursday of every month
Register: Book a spot on a tour by emailing [email protected]

Photo by Simon Scott

The minimal dwelling that also served as his private work space is set amongst a contemplative garden landscaped with Himalayan rhododendrons, Fraser River grasses, bamboo and dogwood trees and a marble moon-viewing platform extending over a pond. A refuge for Erickson’s creative spirit, the garden was as an inspirational oasis for his designs as well as a laboratory for experimentation.

The artful use of horizontal planes and the subtle composition of plants speak to design traits and themes that underlie many of his projects. Erickson hosted legendary soirées in the garden for his friends and illustrious guests, including Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau, among others, who were treated to special events like a reading by famed anthropologist Margaret Mead and a performance by Rudolf Nureyev.

The garden was a stop on the Vancouver Heritage Foundation’s Mid Century Modern House Tour last year. A new tour, with new stops, is coming up on September 24, 2016.

The Arthur Erickson Foundation (AEF) is a registered charitable organization. Its mission is to honour the legacy and sustain the work of Arthur Erickson.

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