Michelle Madonna established her own landscape-design business in the Hamptons three years ago, giving her a total of 10 years’ experience in landscape architecture in the Hamptons. She started her own business to enhance her creative freedom and she believes “in initiatives that support women-owned business and empower women entrepreneurs.”
Her designs are innovative, marrying modern and classic styles, and combining wild and formal plantings to give powerful contrast to a garden. She explains how she adores “monochromatic gardens like an all-green garden or an all-white garden. They are classy and sophisticated, calming but simply beautiful. With everything I design, I have strong creative reasoning behind it. I want my gardens to be restorative and inspirational spaces for my clients.”
As you can see in her designs, Michelle’s creative influencers include Frederick Law Olmstead, the father of landscape architecture who designed Central Park. “Being in a park that was designed but feels natural is one of the reasons I admire him.” Central Park was designed in the pastoral style of landscape architecture that uses nature as restoration for your spirit. “I believe all landscapes should be restorative,” she says.
Another of her key influences is Maya Lin, the renowned designer, architect, and artist. Lin has created earth works known as wave fields, where the grassed landscape has been sculpted into waves, creating a work of art. “This inspires me to see landscape in different forms. The landscape is a canvas for art.”
When asked about her favorite gardens, she shared with us that the 5oo acres of landscape art at Storm King Art Center in the Hudson Valley, which has one of Lin’s wave fields, is stunning and imaginative. A great place for inspiration. And, she explained that the “Japanese gardens of Kyoto are spectacular. I love and admire all styles of Japanese gardens, especially when the focus is on meditation and contemplation. I believe a successful garden moves your mind and calms your soul. It brings peace to the modern and hectic, crazy world we live in.”
Married in Bermuda last summer to a Wall Street portfolio manager, Michelle loves the Caribbean. “The tropical vegetation and color of the ocean are also sources of inspiration in my work.”
Michelle Madonna Design