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A native of Brooklyn, Joan Grabel studied painting at the School of Visual Arts in New York. One of her mentors was the Minimalist artist Robert Mangold, known for combining classical elements of composition – shape, line and color – to create abstract large-scale works. This had a profound impact on her artistic sensibility. Joan’s aesthetic is grounded in highly refined geometric shapes that invite the viewer to interpret their meaning.

After moving to Los Angeles, where she painted and exhibited, she expanded the canvas to the landscape. Joan applied her sense of color and composition to landscape design, and over a 25-year career, created landscapes that reflect the same adherence to Minimalism that her works on paper and canvas embody, often using a single line to create movement and a single color to create mass.

Now living in northern New Mexico, Joan is inspired by the raw beauty of the rock formations, diverse landscapes and subtle and enticing colors. Influenced by Japanese aesthetics, she continues to explore the essence of form and the impact of color, both in landscape design and fine art.

Joan holds a Bachelor of Science in Art Eduction from New York University, a Master of Arts in Art from California State University Los Angeles, and studied Landscape Architecture at the University of California Los Angeles.


Eco Conscious or eco friendly landscape design involves using plants, irrigation methods, and hardscape materials that preserve natural resources and reduce water usage and costs.

Sustainable practices can be applied to a variety of landscape garden styles and architecture.

In practicing sustainable landscape design, plants are selected for the microclimate. Using drought tolerant plants, also known as water wise plants that have low to moderate water requirements, helps to conserve water. Plants can be native or exotic – many varieties are coming from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and Mexico.

Efficient irrigation methods and permeable materials such as decomposed granite, tumbled recycled glass, pebbles, pavers, brick, or stone set in sand, minimizes water run-off. Using LEED certified composite material and sustainably harvested timber in the design of fences, gates, decks, and pergolas, natural resources are preserved.

Award Winning Designer
Designs featured in top publications
Featured Designer on Home and Garden Television (HGTV)
Featured Landscape Designs on HGTV.com
Featured Landscape Designs on Houzz.com
Special interest in the function and design of the Courtyard
Exhibiting Artist in Los Angeles
Member: Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD)
Inspired by Japanese gardens, Southwest architecture and native plants of the Southwest, the colonial towns of Mexico, formal gardens of Italy, stone architecture of Provence, France and Mediterranean Flora from New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and Mexico

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