Gold medal. A striking space for a strong, successful woman for the Wedgwood Garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2018. Photos by Jo Thompson and Marianne Majerus.
Nature, flowers and horticulture have always been at the heart of Wedgwood’s design work and this has been Jo’s source of inspiration for the garden. Stone, streams and majestic weeping willows all work together to create a peaceful, relaxing entertaining area.
The centrepiece of the garden is the exquisite an complex sculptural pavilion which represents the curves of femininity and innovation at the same time. It sweeps through and over the garden, with an almost imperceptible lightness.
Inspiration for the pavilion was drawn from renowned sculptor Barbara Hepworth’s delicate Winged Figure, crafted in 1961 for the flagship John Lewis store in Oxford Street. The sweeping lines of Hepworth’s String Figure, described in art literature as ‘rejecting the weight and solidity of male forebears’, are also referenced in the weightlessness of the bronze structure.
The curved structure was a collaborative project with ‘The Seduction of Curves’ author Allan McRobie and the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge.
Below the sculpture sits a pond with York stone stepping stones, leading to a terrace with stone seat and coffee table, hewn from the same boulder . From here the whole garden can be admired: there is a view through to a delicate stream which appears to come from a spring in one of the vast York stone boulders at the other end of the garden.