Garden News Blog

Exploration and Inspiration with the Dougherty Sculpture

Dougherty Artist's Talk for Members
Patrick Dougherty gives a talk to Garden members about his site-specific sculpture at BBG during a Members' Summer Evening. Photo by Rebecca Bullene.
Dougherty Artist's Talk for Members
Members and their families explore the almost-complete Dougherty sculpture. Photo by Rebecca Bullene.

On Wednesday evening BBG members were able to enjoy the garden after hours and explore Patrick Dougherty's woven-wood sculpture. With the five "lairs" now complete, Dougherty and volunteers will be working until Friday on the final cosmetic weaving that will make the work a finished piece.

After members had time to wander in and around the willow sanctuaries, Dougherty gave a talk on the process of creating the sculpture. While making a site visit to BBG a year ago, Dougherty drew sketches and made word associations based on the feelings he experienced while exploring the potential work site. When asked about some of the words that came to mind as he contemplated what he wanted to build in Brooklyn, Dougherty smiled and said "lairs–a place for feral children and wayward adults."

The sculptures certainly have created inviting spaces for Brooklyn residents and each day more and more visitors are stopping by to explore and enjoy these towers of twigs. The piece is also inspiring creativity and interaction. On Wednesday afternoon BBG member Michael Braudy gave an impromptu violin performance within one of the lairs much to the delight of other visitors in the area.

Rebecca Bullene is a former editor at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. She is the proprietor of Greenery NYC, a creative floral and garden design company that specializes in botanical works of art including terrariums, urban oasis gardens, and whimsical floral arrangements.


August 26, 2010
Michael Goldman

The video with the beautiful violin music added greatly to appreciating this marvelous sanctuary. Gloriously peaceful.

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