Garden art: the trickle down effect

August 19, 2008
Written by Greenhouse Canada
If you think that a sprinkler is just a device for getting water onto your grass with a minimum of fuss, you haven’t seen the latest trend in garden art.

Imagine free-standing sculptures that not only water your lawn, but also put on a show while doing so. “I have a brass fish that stands 30 inches high,” says Perry Molema, Canadian director of Aquascape Inc., a manufacturer of water scape products in Brampton, Ont. “It spins on its tail and water gurgles up and splashes down. That bit of water sound drowns out urban noise and makes my backyard feel like an oasis.”

Douglas Walker of Black Creek, B.C., is one of the best known creators of what he calls kinetic sculptures for the backyard. Walker, a photographer, stumbled across the idea four years ago while designing his own garden. He wanted something to give his tiny pond a focus. “I picked up a copper pipe from a local garage sale and decided to hook up a pump to it,” says Walker. “Then I got it to sprinkle water. When it was finished, a neighbor saw it and wanted to buy it as a gift for her father.” Walker’s fountains incorporate bits of glass and old water faucets, as well as discarded musical instruments such as tubas, saxophones and trombones. They’re built to move — or, as Walker says, “perform.”

In full motion, water bubbles and gushes from horns of copper and brass, creating sprays of mist that dance in the sun. “People love the motion,” says Walker. “My sculptures are whimsical and the water ties all the pieces together. People walk away with a smile on their face when they see them.”

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