Stunning sculpture for Wedgwood garden

The power and drama of the Cornish coastline will sweep into the Wedgwood Garden at the 2019 RHS Chelsea Flower Show with a dramatic sculpture by Falmouth sculptor Ben Barrell.

The garden, designed by award-winning designer Jo Thompson, for sponsor Wedgwood, will feature a striking wave sculpture – appearing to spray up between arches on the pavilion-lined garden – standing above a pool with five of Ben’s carved Purbeck stepping stones and a large walk-on frieze, allowing visitors to stand surrounded by water in the garden. These rippled surfaces will represent the passage of time with the eroded friezes appearing sculptured by flowing water over the years.

Water is used in the garden by Jo, recognising its importance in contributing to Wedgwood’s success by transporting the iconic porcelain across the globe.

The garden’s watercourse will flow through multiple levels, unifying and delineating different areas. Jo’s trickling stream connects key elements and echoes the canals and waterways of Staffordshire.

Ben (pictured above) said: “Jo wanted to reference the pivotal role that water played in the success of Wedgwood’s factories and its transformation from a national into an international success. As a central theme to the garden, the water that my sculptures characterise are individually dynamic or gentle but equally powerful. The wave also relates to the human form, as I’ve deliberately linked the proportions to a figure to bring the element of human connection to nature.

This garden is a fantastic demonstration of how sculpture can bring beauty and functionality – the stepping stones will allow visitors to walk onto works of art as they move across the pool and immerse themselves in the beauty of water as well as gaining a unique perspective of the garden.”

The 2019 Wedgwood Garden marks its 260th anniversary and reflects the entrepreneurial, innovative and creative spirit of Josiah Wedgwood (1730-1795).

Photo credits: Images of Ben credit: Hugh Hastings, garden design: ©Jo Thompson