Nature Walk is a further development of Round Up (After Monet), Legge Lewis Legge’s project commissioned for the 2008 International Garden Festival, held annually at the Jardins de Metis, Reford Gardens, Grand-Métis, Québec, Canada. Round Up (after Monet) was an array of 9 6-foot high earthworks bound with sod, heavy-duty strapping and cam buckles. The steep mounds grew and changed shape individually over time. An act of extreme landscaping, part lawn, pinch, pile and stack, this modern topiary was a growing sculpture sprung from ideas conflating Romantic Impressionism with the typical American lawn. The project spanned 2 entire seasons of the Festival, from 2008 to the spring of 2010, when it was programmatically enhanced to provide further interactivity with the public.
A new project was built upon the existing one and renamed Double Serpent Nature Walk, in part to comply with the theme of the 2010 Festival, Paradise. Over the previous winter a variety of tall meadow grasses and wildflowers were cultivated in Jardins de Metis greenhouses. In early spring these seedlings were added to the original monoculture of the grown-out turf grass. A low, 4.5-inch-wide pine balance beam was installed in what seemed like a random pattern, flashing through the site at lightening-bolt angles 18 inches above the ground. All was left untended for the season. The beam grazed some mounds and steered wide of others, and each of the two ends cantilevered out over the crushed granite site borders, inviting visitors to step up and into the now overgrown mound array. The experience of a typical ‘nature walk’ was heightened as visitors were encouraged to make their way along the 140 feet of balance beam and not slip off into the ‘unknown’ of the deep, sometimes wet and marsh-like wild landscape.
Double Serpent Nature Walk
commissioned by: 2010 International Garden Festival,
Jardins de Metis, Reford Gardens, Grand-Métis, Québec, Canada.
Design Team: Legge Lewis Legge (Andrea Legge, Deborah Lewis, Murray Legge)