"Recent transformations in culture have been characterized In terms of the emergence of a new sublime, that aesthetic instance identified by Burke and Kant in which the infinite or unrepresentable is intimated. Thus Lyotard writes that the postmodern is that which "puts forward the unpresentable in presentation itself ... in order to impart a stronger sense of the unpresentable." And Jameson writes of a "hysterical sublime' which he finds in the complex internal spaces of the Bonaventure Hotel in Los Angeles and in the mutually reflective prismatic skyscrapers at Bunker Hill in the same city. These instances stand for him for the Incoherence of contemporary culture, the infinite regress of current semiosis. But while traditional aesthetics has described the sublime in terms of Infinitude and fathomless depth, postmodern architecture has been characterized by its critics - Kenneth Frampton for example - as lacking any depth at all. This view is in the ascendency. It disparages postmodern as "mere" scenography. We thus have two architectural postmodernisms Jamesons sublime symptom of the culture of late capitalism and Frampton's scenographic impoverishment of our senses and manipulation of our behaviour. The counter-strategy which has been offered to the former is the map or the path; a resistance to the latter has been identified in the bounded "place-form" or enclave. Another idea from eighteenth century aesthetic theory can mediate between these two postmodernisms. This idea is that of the picturesque. The picturesque identified a taste for roughness over smoothness, rugged outline, irregularity, asymmetry, age and decay - a taste for intricacy and complexity. It found its apotheosis in English landscape gardens such as Stowe, with their circuits (paths), scenes and enclosures, edifying temples, ruins and fragments. Considering the design of these gardens, the picturesque could in a single figure articulate a number of ideas now current In architecture discourse : the spectacle, narrativity, the bounded domain or "place", the monument, even the cinematic. The "naturalism" in Laugier's ideas regarding the urban is also to be borne in mind here. But the interest of the picturesque now is not to be found in its metaphorical reach. Rather it lies firstly in the reminder that as land came to be seen through the frame of a painting so is all our apprehension of the world Informed by our culture; secondly, that this apprehension is always political. The English landscape gardens have frequently been associated with the rise of Whig liberalism (by John Dixon Hunt for instance) but also with the proletarianization of the poor. The parks in which these gardens were laid out were often made possible under enclosure acts dispossessing peasants of the feudal rights, and preparing them for a new role in the nineteenth century as an urban working class. In the colonial experience, too, the picturesque and property were mutually entailed. Immediately after being taken as a British colony, New Zealand was envisaged as a garden, its indigenous population to be dispossessed of land so as to become a new working class. The aesthetic of the picturesque and socio-political metamorphoses associated with industrialism and colonialism are linked, the first not being simply indicative of or sequential to the second, but imbricated in it. What, then, can be said of the contemporary picturesque to be found in the interior of the Bonaventure Hotel as described by Jameson (a nightmare inversion of Frampton's place-form) and also in the landscaped, secured enclave property developments which can be found anywhere, Including New Zealand?"