Georgeobelisk at the British Library designed by Todd Longstaffe-Gowan
Cityscapes and the British Library present the Georgeobelisk, a temporary garden installation on the Library’s piazza, designed by landscape architect and garden historian Todd Longstaffe-Gowan.
Temporary and pop-up gardens and pocket parks are becoming an increasingly familiar part of the urban landscape, responding to the demands of population density in cities and the necessity for dynamic and flexible green design. Yet as the Georgeobelisk reveals, the notion of ephemeral gardens is nothing new. Drawing inspiration from ephemeral gardens in the Georgian era, the installation draws a parallel between past and present, revealing the different ways these spaces have been used to engage, educate, entertain, and provide respite from the pressures of daily life.
As a postmodern vision of an Arcadian landscape, the installation mixes serious historical research with an air of kitsch, creatively achieving a balance between natural and artificial elements. Sheep graze on artificial turf, whilst a bust of George I towers six metres high upon a Hawksmoor inspired pavilion which houses a celestial putto, representing the most recent Prince George.
The garden compliments the British Library’s major new exhibition, Georgians Revealed: Life, Style and the Making of Modern Britain, and will be open to the public for the duration of the exhibition. Entrance to the garden is free between 8.30- 20.00. The garden is funded by The Sackler Trust’
“Cityscapes places premium importance on animating city spaces with gardens, and the Georgeobelisk showcases how these can be transformed through temporary installations, in a manner which will be sure to capture the public’s imagination..” – Darryl Moore, Cityscapes Director