Still sticking with the theme of stately homes and gardens, I recently revisited Chatsworth House in Derbyshire. I know: I’m getting boring; I must go to some edgier places. But Chatsworth House sculpture is always worth seeing, and they often have temporary displays in the gardens alongside the more traditional statues. It’s no Yorkshire Sculpture Park, but it certainly adds to the whole Chatsworth experience.
The most intriguing exhibit this time around was a mechanical flower fountain. I have no idea who designed it, but he/she/they did a tremendous job [update: apparently it was specially commissioned for Chatsworth, called Revelation by Angela Conner, recently reinstalled]. I first became aware of it when I heard what sounded like a rush of water. On closer inspection, the fountain appeared to be a water-powered mechanism, with moving sepals (my education wasn’t totally wasted) which opened and closed, revealing a golden flower ball. The flower head repeatedly fills with water, which then floods out when it opens.