The Reason Behind Water Fountains in Japanese Gardens

Japanese gardens usually feature a water element. c_109__08491.jpg You will often see Japanese water fountains in the doorway of a temple or home due to the fact that they are considered symbolic of physical and spiritual cleansing. Since water is the most important element of any Japanese fountain, the design is normally simple.

Many people also opt for a water fountain that has a bamboo spout. The bamboo spout is positioned over the basin, typically made of natural stones, and water trickles out. It ought to have a worn-down, weathered look and feel as well. So that the fountain appears at one with nature, people customarily decorate it with natural stones, pretty flowers, and plants. Clearly this fountain is much more than merely a nice add-on.

An alternate approach is to get a stone fountain, set it on a bed of rock, and place live bamboo and pretty stones around it. Gradually moss begins to grow over the stones and cover them, and as that happens the area begins to look more and more like a natural part of the landscape.

If you are fortunate enough to have a big section of open land you can create a water feature that is much more elaborate. Give some thought to adding a beautiful final touch like a pond filled with koi or a tiny stream.

However, water does not have to be an addition in a Japanese water fountain. Lots of people prefer to represent water with sand, gravel, or rocks rather than putting in actual water. In addition, flat rocks can be laid out close enough together to give the impression of a rippling brook.

Experience the World’s Most Impressive Water Works

Jeddah, Saudi Arabia has the highest continuously- running water fountain known as the King Fahd Fountain (1985). Attaining incredible heights above the Red Sea, this fountain jets water 260 meters (853 feet) in the sky.

Reaching water heights of 202 meters (663 feet), the World Cup Fountain in the Han-Gang River in Seoul, Korea (2002), is recognized as the second highest worldwide.

The Gateway Geyser (1995) found next to the Mississippi River in St. Louis, Missouri is #3 on the list.

Regarded as the tallest fountain in the United States, it propels water 192 meters (630 feet) into the sky.

The next on the list is Port Fountain located in Karachi, Pakistan which rockets water 190 meters (620 feet) into the sky.

Number 4: On a typical day the water is limited to 91 meters (300 feet) at the Fountain Park feature in Fountain Hills, Arizona, but it is capable of pushing water up to 171 meters (561 feet) when all three pumps are working.

The Dubai Fountain opened in 2009 next to Burj Khalifa - the world's highest building. It performs every 1/2 hour to previously recorded music and propels water up to 73 meters (240 feet) in height -it also has built in extreme shooters, though only used during special events, which reach 150 meters (490 feet) in height.

Making it in the top 8 is the Captain James Cook Memorial Jet in Canberra (1970) which measures 147 meters (482 feet).

And finally we have the Jet d'eau, in Geneva (1951) which measures 140 meters (460 feet) in height.

Roman Wall Fountains: Michelangelo’s Masterpieces

Two Florentine masters by the names of Michelangelo and Ammannati created the oldest Roman wall fountains during the 16th century. The fountain in the Piazza del Campidoglio in Rome, which was completed in 1536 and became part of the façade of the Palazzo Senatorio, was Michelangelo’s first creation. Some years later, a more extravagant water display was made feasible with the extension of the Aqua Felice into the Capitol. Michelangelo had expected this, however, and built a bigger basin styled on the art of the late Cinquecento.

Was the famous maestro the originator of the wall fountain? The sculptor’s designs truly shaped the future style of fountains in Italy. The styles found at the Fountain of the River Gods at the Villa Lante, Bagnaia 1, and the Fountain of the Mugnone, set between the stairway on the main axis of the Villa Pratolino, are other examples of this style.

Regrettably, Michelangelo was destined to put his own brilliance aside and combine classical elements into fountains based on Roman styles. An original wall fountain for the top of the passageway of the Belvedere in the Vatican was commissioned to the famed artist by Julius III (1550-1555). The fountain was to be decorated with a marble figure of Moses hitting a stone from which water flowed. The option of the Moses figure was abandoned, however, because of the time it would take to build it and was therefore replaced by an antique image of Cleopatra. It was thought easier to use a traditional sculpture above the fountain rather than have the eminent artist design a totally new figure.


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