This garden is the central courtyard in an art gallery complex, and provides space for gallery visitors to relax and reflect, or socialise during a visit. I wanted to create a space which would reflect the clean lines of the gallery, yet provide somewhere to feel connected to nature – contrasting to the white interior.
The garden features a central pool, which will collect rainwater, fed by rills running from the building downpipes. Surrounding the pool is moisture-loving meadow planting, irrigated by the rainwater, made up of a mixture of native and non-native wetland plants, including grasses, reeds, and flowering perennials. Ground cover plants will creep into the joints between the concrete planks, creating a soft edge between hard materials and planting. Concrete benches next to the rills allow visitors to view the meadow at close-quarters, while patio space at either end of the garden is designed for informal seating to be set out on a sunny day, or for a temporary exhibition.
The aim was to create an immersive, tranquil space, which connects the visitor to the garden and the processes that sustain it.
Helen Saunders Landscape & Garden Design