Bristol

Submitted by Allison Newsome

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Client

Location: Bristol, RI, United States

Completion date: 2016

Artwork budget: $50,000

Project Team

Artist

Allison Newsome

RainKeep

Other

Luther Blount

Blount Boats

Overview

Water conservation. RainKeep is a rain harvesting sculpture for urban farming and landscape use. It holds 500-5,000 gallons of water for drip irrigation, bucket or hose. RainKeep acts like a well in a village, a “Place maker” that brings people together while gathering water. RainKeep is passive solar, solely using gravity,. Inspired by Biomimicry down several brass rain-chains into the sculptures storage chamber mimicry with the observations of redwoods, the upper canopy catches rain and dew and directs it down rain-chains into its storage vessel.Wing/petals also catch and direct water .

Goals

Get off town water for urban farming and landscape use. This integration was of utmost importance in the overall design. Whorl was commissioned by the Bristol garden club and necessity and sustainability was what drove their interest and fund drive to commission this work. They did not have a source of fresh water at the park garden they maintain and this utility sculpture and "Place Maker" was exactly what they wanted. Whorl has won the RI State National Garden Club award 2019 and will be made public this late Spring 2020.

Process

For fabrication I collaborated with Blount Boats and their engineer Luther Blount. Welding and fabrication was performed by Bud Luthers Welding Company. I worked with the Bristol Garden Club of Rhode Island at the site in Silver Creek, where the Garden Club maintains a garden. The park is owned by the town of Bristol, and this entailed my working with Bristol Parks and Recreation, Bristol Town Council, landscape architects, master gardeners, as well as Rhode Island Council of the Arts from whom they received a grant.