Petal Play

Submitted by Mary Ann Mears

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Client: Kettler: Metropolitan

Location: Columbia, MD, United States

Completion date: 2015

Artwork budget: $425,000

Project Team

Landscape Architect

Brian Reetz

Design Collective

Client

Kevin Peterkin

Kettler

Artist

Mary Ann Mears

Overview

14 Sculptures in a park 400' x 100' Painted Aluminum, Stainless Steel ranging in height from 2' to 28.' Sculpture is interactive, some pieces move in the wind, others incorporate light, there is an interactive water feature under the tall wind pieces.

Goals

Running along the front of a mixed-use development, the park-like site is intended to be interactive for children and families while serving as landmark for the project. The inspiration for the forms is the tulip poplar. Abstracted petal forms are used at various scale from very small “petals of thought” scattered across the site to freely rotating large petals with seedpods on top of tall poles. Petals are stretched and twisted to form slides and other structures that children can climb over and under

Process

Community engagement through the Howard County Arts Council was essential in conceptualizing the project. Kettle, the developer and Design Collective, the architect and landscape architect were close collaborators. For example, when I wanted to have petal slides leaning against an earth form, the landscape architect made that possible.