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Giles Rayner and His Mind Bending Water Sculptures

Giles Rayner and His Mind Bending Water Sculptures

We take a look at the water sculptures of artist Giles Rayner. For Giles Rayner, it all started at the age of 16 when he fell in love with the sculpting of ceramics. Years later, he felt an attraction for metalwork. Since then, he has built up an incredibly varied portfolio of water sculptures. He has the ability to create sculptures that not only work in terms of scale and design, but are also timeless. Because of this, his work can be placed almost anywhere, from a country yard to a modern garden to a public space. His works intrigue; they have a simple aesthetic beauty but radiate energy in combination with the water. As Rayner puts it, the water not only has an aesthetic purpose, it isthe element that embodies designs with real life, binding order and chaos and achieving — sometimes the dramatic, sometimes the peaceful”.

Castle hill water sculpture topiary. Photo credit: Clive Nichols

Castle hill water sculpture topiary. Photo credit: Clive Nichols

Giles Rayner

If we take a closer look at his creations, we have the feeling that he sometimes defeats the impossible, putting real energy into each design. Take his Falling Leaves water sculpture, for example. The 12-foot-tall sculpture contains five triangular “leaves” of reinforced copper. The water runs from the upper leaf, joining each torrent as it tumbles through the other leaves into the water basin. To correspond to the size of each leaf, more water is introduced at each intersection. All this without ever seeing one tube.

Falling Leaves water sculpture. Photo credit: Gile Rayner

Falling Leaves water sculpture. Photo credit: Gile Rayner

Brainteasing operation, only Giles has the answer. Another brainteaser is the Whirlpool sculpture, a six-foot-tall reinforced copper pyramidal basin. The water clings to the steep exterior of the bowl as it gently overflows, sucked downward in an impressive vortex into the center of the basin. I’m still not quite sure how the water in both sculptures is pushed upward. You judge for yourself!
Whirlpool copper bowl sculpture Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Whirlpool copper bowl sculpture Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Force Meets Elegance An excellent example of elegance combined with brute force is the Lasso, a three-dimensional movement of six tubes of stainless steel from which converging water jets cause a starburst effect in the center. That elegance can also be seen in the Serpent, a nine-foot-tall spiral of marine-grade stainless steel. The spiral starts from a broad base and ends in a small top, where a water jet falls down.
Serpent (West) One of a pair of 9ft water sculptures installed at Corsock House. Marine grade stainless steel. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Serpent (West) One of a pair of 9ft water sculptures installed at Corsock House. Marine grade stainless steel. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Lasso water feature stainles steel. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Lasso water feature stainles steel. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Converging Water Jets System The Implosion, Fusion, and Coral water sculptures also all use the converging water jets system. Rayner’s attention to detail is clear. The water jets come together in the middle of the circle, and not a bit lower or higher. It takes precise work to make sure the lowest jets have enough power and the others less energy to get them to the same point.
Implosion stainless steel water feature. Photo credit: GilesRayner

Implosion stainless steel water feature. Photo credit: GilesRayner

Fusion water feature jets. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Fusion water feature jets. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Coral water sculpture 2002 original. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Coral water sculpture 2002 original. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

More Amazing Works It’s not possible to review each of Rayner’s works in detail. But the following creations still deserve your attention. Blade looks at first to be just a creation of bronze (and structural stainless steel). But the 30-foot-tall 12-foot-wide water sculpture is a work of art worthy of review. The Blade consists of 31 pieces that overlap like the scales of a fish. The scales are largest on the base, becoming smaller as they go up. From the top, water flows down all over the object, leaving no small piece dry.
Blade 30ft Water sculpture. Photo credits: Giles Rayner

Blade 30ft Water sculpture. Photo credits: Giles Rayner

The Use of Reinforced Copper The Twiggy water sculpture is a 16-foot-tall fountain composed of many hollow tubes of reinforced copper. The sculpture looks like a big torch or tree, with water raining down from the “twigs” that represent a burst of energy. When an auxiliary pump is turned on, a burst of water breaks up in the structure to form a cloudburst. In combination with some lighting, this gives the sculpture a completely different appearance at day or night. Exciting the Senses Related Articles:

Fountain Twiggy Water sculpture night. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Fountain Twiggy Water sculpture night. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Exciting the Senses Rayner’s sculptures excite the senses in a new way. The combination of light, water, and movement adds a totally new dimension. The thoughtfulness and complexity of his sculptures are sometimes overlooked because of their simple appearance. That’s what makes Giles Rayner a leading water artist and sculptor. We just couldn’t publish this articles without featuring these ones:
Z Coriolis water sculpture sunset. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Coriolis water sculpture sunset. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Twister water sculpture Norfolk. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Twister water sculpture Norfolk. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Globe water sculpture tectonic Chelsea Flower show. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Globe water sculpture tectonic Chelsea Flower show. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Copper Nebula IV rotating water sculpture. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Copper Nebula IV rotating water sculpture. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Charybdis water sculpture large whirlpool vortex. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

Charybdis water sculpture large whirlpool vortex. Photo credit: Giles Rayner

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