Using Art in your garden design
CHRIS SLAUGHTER

CHRIS SLAUGHTER

Outdoor Art Effects

Let me take a few moments to chat about the subject of outdoor art and the balanced approach which helps you lean towards ‘Do I or don’t I’

When designing a new outdoor room, naturally we establish collectively in crude bullet point terms the all too well used expression ‘Wish List’. Such a list is more about ‘want’ and not about ‘how’ along with our old challenge of cost. So thinking a bit deeper about want. Want is a bunch of elements that magically have to work together seamlessly and in harmony.

It’s one of the most important aspects of designing a garden of whatever shape, size, taste, style and use. The best gardens are the ones that work with the environment to which the home resides and the elements that are introduced are carrying that same balance.

I mentioned ‘Trompe L’oeil’ earlier. A term used for the generation of an optical illusion or trick of the eye. Whenever I get the chance to apply this design technique I jump at it. But as mentioned there needs to be a reason for its interpretation to help ensure you get the biggest bang. The use of mirrors old, fancy, discreet etc. gives the ability to bring light, additional or hidden views, curiosity along with softening down a boring boundary wall. If you built a wall say and within it had a recessed area. By placing a mirror to suit the recess you inadvertently start to generate the trick. On a point of caution. Sorry to be boring. Just know you are dealing with glass so make sure its toughened. A tray tennis ball could upset the day.

Using artwork in your garden designs in Sydney

Talk about softening down a boring boundary. One of my clients some years back asked me to come back to share her garden as it had now matured. I note she is a very dear family friend now. Elayne had a fantastic idea and purchased three pieces, painted them with outdoor paints and suitably hung them on the said boring boundary wall. What a statement and look how the wall has lost all its self-importance. Just fantastic and more importantly personal.

Let’s bring in what could be deemed as personal outdoor art and re-introduce Elayne’s garden once again. Elayne some years back grew up in Erskineville. On her travels around the area she came across an old disused glass smelting factory. Well that was music to Elayne’s ears and eyes as treasures unknown may be strewn about. Well sure enough brick sized chunks of glass of irregular shape lawn around carrying that old,’Green’ colour typical of older glasses and smelting methods. The garden we designed and built had to incorporate these sentimental pieces of glass and during the day they glow as the sun’s rays dance over the many faces of the pieces and ironically are very touchy feely.

There is no right or wrong. Move them about and get yourself into your garden to enjoy the true tranquillity only a garden can give you.

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