All my friends have been here. Charlie and I have traveled throughout New England and the Mid- Atlantic states to explore museums and art galleries, but, we had not visited Grounds for Sculpture. It was definitely on my “To Do” list.
Grounds for Sculpture is an easy 30 minute drive from Moorestown, NJ. As we pulled into the parking lot, we wondered what we would find. I had heard from my friends that the Rat Restaurant was very good so I was hoping to spend some time there. If you plan to dine there, make reservations, they are very busy for good reason.
But first, the grounds & sculpture. Having previously visited Storm King in New York State, I could not help but compare the two venues. Storm King seemed to have an aesthetic which appears to determine where the art and sculpture are placed on the landscape. My sense at Grounds for Sculpture was that everywhere I looked, there was a piece of artwork placed at every turn, maybe almost sculptural overload. However, I enjoyed the artwork at GFS and especially appreciate that children are welcome to touch and climb on the artwork, if deemed safe to do so.
The day was gray and overcast so that reflections on the waterways were especially vivid. By evening, the shadows of the sculptures caused a very nice effect. Later, aided by electric lighting against the darkening sky, the sculptures produced a new visual drama to observe.
Nature plays an integral role here and the balance of trees, shrubs, bushes, grasses, and waterways in tandem with the sculpture works well. Another natural delight- a flock of peacocks stalk the premises, preening or begging for food, depending on their fancy.
Seward Johnson, the founder of this art park, is well known for his life size human figure bronze sculptures strategically placed in cities throughout the world. He delights in the emotional effect of surprise his figures cause one to experience at first glance.
Thanks go to Seward Johnson for realizing his dream and forming this entertaining space for all to experience his artwork as well as artwork of others.
There are three places to dine on the premises. As I mentioned previously, The Rat Restaurant is quite nice. We had a late lunch and were seated by the window with a great view of the reflecting pond and Monet’s Bridge. The other two eateries would work well for families on the go.
Bring the children. There are many interactive situations for them to explore, even a sculpture to create music.
The Rat French Restaurant
Monet's Water Lily Pond