Discovery & Transformation - The Art of Golf Design
Ballybunion Golf Course, Ireland. Photo by Barry L. Jordan
- "A golf course that exhibits sound design principles, compositional beauty, and thrilling golf, is the product of an Architect’s ability to arrange features and forms in an artistic and functional manner. This requires a specific design philosophy as well as technical competency." Barry L. Jordan
My design approach is to discover and to transform. Discover natural golf holes that maximize the playing potential of the existing site and transform the landscape to create character and beauty while linking the remaining golf holes. This balance ensures we fully utilize a site.
Golf course design is an art; one that solves technical problems while sculpting compositions for all players to enjoy. Each successful design achieves a harmonious resolution that satisfies the specific goals and objectives of the project while respecting the unique characteristics of the site. This art must be practiced by responsible stewards of the natural environment. It requires a knowledge of ecology and an understanding of the consequences associated with the manipulation of the landscape. A conscious effort to "follow the requests" of both the client and the existing landscape is essential.
My goal is to design memorable golf courses. I accomplish this by developing a concept tailored to the features and forms of each site. I create these concepts by abstracting and blending a combination of the following inspirations:
• The Original Links The timeless and rugged links courses are filled with brilliantly conceived golf holes that take full advantage of existing topography and environmental conditions. I look to these courses for inspiration as I capture and integrate a "sense of place" on site.
• Natural Processes Golf was originally played over topography formed by wind and water erosion. I have developed a design palette by studying these natural processes through photography, drawing, and writing,
• The Existing Site Often an existing site provides such beauty and character that new features and forms compose a natural golf course.
• Other Arts The rhythm of music, the sequence of dance, the principles of architecture, the philosophies of garden design, and the beauty of sculpture; all inspire me to create the aesthetic character of a golf course.