William Pye Water Scupture


Downpour has the form of a suspended vessel with its outer rim constantly overflowing with water that apparently comes from nowhere but the bowl itself. This is an image I wanted to realise for some time, as I felt it would make a beautiful fountain or water sculpture. The courtyard of the new British Embassy in Oman provided a wonderful setting for implementing this idea. My intention was to combine the drama of suspending a large sculptural object in space combined with various water effects - still and reflective on the surface, but more animated and lively where the water falls off the edge in fine, vertical rods. One source of inspiration for the hanging bowl came from the Sultan Hassan Mosque in Cairo where a multitude of lamps are suspended on chains hanging low within a huge vault. The great length of the chains was the simplest means by which to emphasise the loftiness of the space.

The vessel is made of cast bronze that is patinated to form a variegated dark green surface. It hangs on eight apparently identical mirror-polished stainless steel tubes. Four of these are structural, supporting both the weight of the bowl and providing the possibility to adjust its level accurately. The other four supply water to the bowl and electricity for underwater lighting.

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  • Downpour, British Embassy, Muscat, Oman