Garden Ornaments

There is a vast range of garden ornamentation - figurative sculpture, marble fountains, terracotta vases and urns, sun dials, bird baths, drinking fountains – any of which can have a significant art historical role and may be an integral part of a garden design.

Lymington, Hampshire: GazeboLymington, Hampshire: GazeboDown House, Kent: SundialDown House, Kent: SundialKew Gardens: Chinese guardian lionKew Gardens: Chinese guardian lion

Artefacts in an external environment are subjected to extreme fluctuations of temperature and humidity, continual wetting and drying cycles, and a polluted, acidic atmosphere. Corroding original ferrous fixings, frost damage and invasive plant growth can cause severe damage to an artifact in an outdoor setting. Such conditions will result in the gradual decay and deterioration of all outdoor sculpture, this can lead to the need for extensive conservation intervention.

Richmond Park: Drinking fountainRichmond Park: Drinking fountainKew Gardens: Stoneware bowlKew Gardens: Stoneware bowlKew Gardens: Coadestone Medici vaseKew Gardens: Coadestone Medici vase

Ideally all outdoor sculpture should receive regular maintenance if it is to remain in a good condition. An ongoing maintenance programme is usually simple to carry out and most objects should require little or no work once they have been put into good order. An annual inspection to monitor any signs of deterioration is advisable for most items to allow remedial conservation treatments to be implemented.