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By Julie Moir Messervy

Metal and stone sculpture by Lou Nop of Middlebury, Vermont. Photo courtesy of Lou Nop.

When treated properly, wrought iron, ornamental iron, and COR-TEN steel can all be wonderful additions to a landscape.  We’ve had the pleasure of associating with a group of talented metal artists lately, so I thought it was time to share their work.

L: At 19,000 pounds and 19 feet high, Richard Duca’s evocative iron sculpture at the Willow Pond Knoll in Mount Auburn Cemetery seems to transcend the laws of physics. Photo: North American Cemeteries. R: This shade-dappled Beacon Hill garden features the gorgeous metal sculptures of Peter Andruchow. Photo: JMMDS.

We’ve blogged about him before, but we need to do it again:  Peter Andruchow of Woven Steel continues to be our go-to fabricator and artist in the Boston area.  We have been working with Peter and Richard Duca, the creator of the mysterious and compelling COR-TEN steel sculpture that forms the focal point of our garden at Mount Auburn Cemetery’s Willow Knoll, to create what we’re calling the “handrill” for a client’s garden in the Boston area.  We’ll blog about it in more detail once it’s completely finished, but here’s a sneak preview: envision a rill channel along the top of a 40′ curving wall that spills into a circular pool.  Anna Johansen is the project designer, who has done a wonderful job shepherding its design and installation.

Work-in-progress: the COR-TEN steel “handrill,” created by Richard Duca and Peter Andruchow with project designer Anna Johansen. Photos: JMMDS.

A new—and local—friend in the field is Lou Nop, a metal artist from Middlebury, Vermont.  I met Lou at the Vermont Flower Show, where he had created three fascinating pieces:  a 26’-wide “nest” into which sticks had been woven, an elegant wooden door with beautifully wrought iron hinges, and a steel bridge with art deco-style lights.  I visited his studio recently and saw more of his pieces.  My favorites:  a stone and steel gateway that, despite its weight, can blow open with the wind, and a steel castle that he built for his four children. Wow!

Some varied works of Middlebury metal artist Lou Nop. L and C photos courtesy of Lou Nop. R: Steel castle. Photo: Julie Moir Messervy.

I also enjoy the work of  Jill Nooney, owner, with husband Bob Munger of Fine Garden Art, located at Bedrock Farm in Lee, NH.  Jill’s one-of-a-kind sculptures, arches, water features, creatures, and more must be seen to be believed! Visit their website for fantastic images and a schedule of Open House days.

Some of Jill Nooney’s remarkable sculptures at Fine Garden Art. Photos by Julie Moir Messervy.

Patrick Gracewood, a friend and reader, is a fine artist from Portland who works in various media, including metal. His enchanting bear fountains, one of which is pictured below, change expressions in different light.

L: Bear fountain by Patrick Gracewood. R: Gracewood’s bronze triptych Bouquet for the City. Photos: Patrick Gracewood Studio.

It’s lovely and inspiring to view sculpture in a garden setting. Cairn Croft, Kevin Doyle’s magical garden in Dover, MA, features sculptors in many media, metal among them.  The garden is open by appointment through June; visit the website for information.

We love to feature talented artists. If you know of other metal workers to add to our list, please tell us in the Comments!




Join the discussion 3 Comments

  • Tish Murphy says:

    Check out metal and stone artist John Sendelbach.
    He’s opening a store in Shelburne Falls, MA,on the Buckland side, near the Bridge of Flowers, called Metal Stone.

  • Christine says:

    Loved this email. It’s so inspiring. As soon as I figure out what to do with the yard, I plan of including some sort of yard art, more than one piece. I especially love the triptych and I think it would stand up to the strong winds where I live.

  • I’m going to be in Shelburne Falls (visiting the Bridge of Flowers, among other things) in a couple weeks. Now something else to look forward to. Thanks for the recommendation!