Round that turn…
This is a very odd installation on the site to come across when you are traveling past roses and pastoral beauty. If you saw the images in Framing the View, you would quickly understand the design cues that were meant to convey.
You enter a garden room, giving you the feeling of enclosure, mystery, creativity and art. The Ruins should be approached the way the designers intended from the hillside path. You leave one experience and enter another of completely different aesthetics.
As you move room to room, the decay increases in this folly. The path from the hillside is landscaped with seven weeping Norway spruce and a weeping Silver fir. Do you think this was intentional to have droopy plants lining the path. You bet. It gives you a sense of the eerie path you might be on.
In movies they do the same thing to increase the sense of foreboding. Here it is building up the viewer’s curiosity. I read that the spruce are meant to have “a human quality calling to mind ghosts, their heads bent in a state of bewilderment.” There are two inside the Ruins and maybe this is the intent. I viewed them more like in movies, to create a sense of what is to become. The form of the trees really enhance the feeling of decay and demise.
The black polished granite water feature is a table-like structure, but has the appearance of a coffin. It was inspired by Italian Renaissance banquet tables. The table rests on a rug constructed from the roof tiles of the house that at one time, occupied this site.
The Ruins are not meant to give the idea of total neglect and departure. Plants are ever-present and seek to reclaim the site, just like in naturally occurring ruins.
See how the rug is artfully created?
The fireplace is getting engulfed in climbing Hydrangea.
Now we head down the hill through the Gravel Garden.