“What gardens give us intellectually, culturally, artistically, and spiritually” was the theme of photographer Ngoc Minh Ngo’s talk at the annual Landscape Luncheon at LongHouse Reserve, a theme echoed in every speaker. “Why are we here?” asked LongHouse Director Carrie Rebora Barratt, “Because we believe in this place, in [founder] Jack Lenor Larsen’s mission, and the importance of beauty in our lives.” Edwina von Gal, founder of the Perfect Earth Project, whose mission is to promote toxin-free landscapes for the health of people and the planet, also recalled the founder, “This is the first Landscape Luncheon without Jack. But Jack is still here!” And then she pointed out a monarch butterfly flitting overhead.
An al fresco lunch followed the morning lectures, where the LongHouse Visionary Award was officially presented to Edwina von Gal by Maya Lin who saluted her saying, “You are a crusader, and we need you, because time is short. We need to save the planet.” The LongHouse Land, Place, Spirit Award was presented by Deborah Nevins to Ngoc Minh Ngo. The LongHouse Horticultural Award was presented with much emotion by Elizabeth Lear to LongHouse horticulturist, Holger Winega, who is returning to private practice, “I am moving on but will not be forgetting LongHouse,” said the much-loved expert.
Guests including LongHouse broad members Dianne Benson, Sherri Donghia, Nina Gillman, Alexandra Munroe, Deborah Nevins and, Peter Olsen, LongHouse Garden Committee Members Elizabeth Lear, Geoffrey Nimmer, Tony Piazza, Charles Savage, Dennis Schrader, and Erika Shank, as well as Laurie Anderson, Louis Bradbury and Ken Quay, Rebecca Chapman, Sima Ghadamian, Lys Marigold, David Maupin, Deborah Miller, Steve Miller, Faith Popcorn, Lee Skolnick, and Mariah Whitmore.
LongHouse Reserve teaches living with art in all its forms. We cherish the land, a nature reserve with thousands of living species; place, an institution to learn, explore and grow; and spirit; a relaxing sanctuary for a break from everyday life. The 16-acre sculpture garden and natural sanctuary in East Hampton boasts as many as 60 works of art, including new works by Steven and William Ladd, who created Right Here, Right Now, representing their practice in love and kindness; Taiwan’s Cheng Tsung Feng presents Fish Trap VI, a pavilion and portal dedicated to his local heritage; Moko Fukuyama engages us with her Hell Gate Keepers, Fitzhugh Karol leads us to Friendship, his group of immense totems, honoring the spirit of trees; and Bjorn Amelan’s sumi ink paintings summon evocative language and stories.
Permanent favorites in the collection include works by Buckminster Fuller, Yoko Ono, and Willem de Kooning. Open to the public April – December, the gardens serve as a living case study of the interaction between plants and people in the 21st century. LongHouse was founded by Jack Lenor Larsen (1927-2020), internationally known textile designer, author, and collector.