Thursday, December 22, 2011

Does it Make You Happy?

I was recently awed by the Garden Conservancy's description of one of their new associate personal gardens which integrates art and garden. I was feeling rather inadequate as I thought of how this person managed to incorporate works of accomplished artists, architects and garden designers into his abode and even, as Claire Sawyer describes, his lifestyle. Then I was reminded of my sister's work with garden sculpture. She scavenges junk yards for things she can weld together to make garden sculpture, and she is good at it. She is no Isamu Noguchi, but neither are about seven billion other people. In this era of easy (at least visual) access to the works of the very best, it is easy to forget the joy and satisfaction of the vernacular, especially the vernacular with which you can enjoy a personal connection. I am pleased that the Garden Conservancy is helping to preserve the home of this literati who has apparently managed to lead a rarefied life and direct the creation of an inspiring garden, but the lesson of the garden should not be that this accomplishment is beyond you and me. It should be that the creative process is a source of joy and gratification not measured by fame and fortune but by your own sense of satisfaction with the effort. Now, as I think about it, my regret is that I haven't yet acquired one of my sister's pieces for my own garden.

Julie Platt in Grand Valley, Pennsylvania created the sculptures you see below. While sunflowers are a popular theme with her she has done a number of other plants and creatures that I failed to photograph. And if you are a fan of "Big Bugs" she has her own version shown at the bottom created as a special commission.