The NVTL appointed Pieter Buys as honorary member in recognition of his wide-ranging talents and the important contributions he has made to the profession. He built up a highly diverse practice in which his design approach formed a striking leitmotif. In addition, Pieter was a considerable force in putting garden architects on an equal footing with architects, engineers, planners and urban designers in multidisciplinary projects. He taught landscape architecture for more than twenty years, including lectureships at the Academy of Architecture and the University of Wageningen.
He was one of the first garden architects to go to Denmark to study at the famous Academy of Fine Arts. He had frequent contact with the famous Danish garden architect C.Th. Sörensen. The characteristic simplicity of form and balanced arrangement of spaces in Danish garden design, partly inspired by the Renaissance, had an influence on his later work. An important theme in his work is the search for the connection between the house and garden and between the garden and the surrounding landscape. He left his mark in Scandinavia, among other things by winning a design competition for a park in Oslo.
He set up private practice in 1952 with a series of partners – Jasper Meijers, Hans Warnau and Bob van der Vliet – and worked with several architects, including Nico van der Laan, Pieter Dijkema and Gerard Wijnen. Dom van der Laan and the ‘Bossche School’ had an influence on his work for some time. He also collaborated on many projects with artists such as the sculptors Van der Linden and André Volten.
Among the most famous designs from his extensive oeuvre are:
> Economische Hogeschool, Tilburg, 1962
> Huize Padua, Boekel, 1968
> A housing estate in Papendrecht, 1974
> University campus, Nijmegen, from 1974
> AMRO Bank, Breda, 1975
A monograph on the significance of his life and work titled ‘Pieter Buys: Maken en Laten’ was published in 2008 by NAi Publishers.