Roman Water Fountains: Michelangelo’s Works of Art

The 16th century saw the construction of the most ancient Roman wall fountains, the designs of two celebrated Florentine sculptures, Michelangelo and Ammannati. Michelangelo’s first fountain was completed in 1536 in the Piazza del Campidoglio in Rome and makes up part of the facade of the Palazzo Senatorio. A conduit from the Aqua Felice was constructed later and it carried water to the Capitol making a more impressive water effect possible. Michelangelo had expected this, however, and built a bigger basin styled on the art of the late Cinquecento.

Was the well-known maestro the first to create wall fountains? twf122l__86834.jpg Italy’s fountains truly show the influence his designs had on the styles found there. The Fountain of the River Gods at the Villa Lante, Bagnaia 1, and the Fountain of the Mugnone arranged between flights of stairs on the main axis of the Villa Pratolino are further models of this type of structure.

It seemed to be Michelangelo’s destiny to combine classic Roman elements into his fountains instead of using his own remarkable talents to design original pieces. A new fountain at the top of the Belvedere in the Vatican was authorized by Julius III (1550-1555) and it fell to the great sculptor to create a unique structure. The fountain was to be adorned with a marble sculpture of Moses striking a stone from which water flowed. Unfortunately for the sculptor, this concept was turned down because it would take a lot of time to build and a classic statue of Cleopatra was used instead. Completing a new design by the famed sculptor was thought to be more complicated than placing an ancient figure above the fountain.

The Source of Today's Garden Fountains

Pope Nicholas V, himself a well educated man, ruled the Roman Catholic Church from 1397 to 1455 during which time he commissioned many translations of old classic Greek documents into Latin. It was important for him to embellish the city of Rome to make it worthy of being known as the capital of the Christian world.

In 1453 the Pope commissioned the rebuilding of the Aqua Vergine, an historic Roman aqueduct which had carried clean drinking water into the city from eight miles away. The ancient Roman custom of building an awe-inspiring commemorative fountain at the location where an aqueduct arrived, also known as a mostra, was restored by Nicholas V. The Trevi Fountain now occupies the area formerly filled with a wall fountain crafted by Leon Battista Albert, an architect commissioned by the Pope. The water which eventually supplied the Trevi Fountain as well as the renown baroque fountains in the Piazza del Popolo and Piazza Navona came from the modified aqueduct which he had renovated.

How Many Variations of Garden Fountains Are There?

Gardens allow you to escape into nature and be outside whenever you want. If you are planning to spend a lot of time in yours, it is worth the effort it takes to do it correctly. Investing in a beautiful garden is good, as it will boost the “curb appeal” and value of your home. Experts suggest adding flowers or trees, a pavement, a charming water feature, or unique statues to enhance the overall look of your property.

A water fountain can make a significant difference to the beauty and tranquility of your garden. Where you once had a plain area, you will now have an outdoor wonderland. You are not the only one who will love the serenity the sounds of the water create; you might also notice an increase in the number of birds and other friendly animals visiting. All attention will now be focussed on the dazzling fountain.

Suggestions for the Choosing the Ideal Fountain for You

When you are deciding on a water fountain, be sure to give some thought to where you will place it. They make gorgeous centerpieces in roundabouts and make a wonderful impression in driveways and entryways too.

It is also possible to acquire a fountain made especially to be mounted against a wall. To secure one against a wall, look for a bar or hook on the back made specifically for this purpose. Such fountains are not stable on their own, therefore, be certain to affix it right away so that it does not topple over as a result of weather conditions, animals or other natural occurrences.

The garden sculpture style, yet another possibility, is perfect for parks or any place people tend to hang out to enjoy the fresh air and scenery.

Where did Garden Water Fountains Come From?

The dramatic or decorative effect of a fountain is just one of the purposes it fulfills, in addition to delivering drinking water and adding a decorative touch to your property.

From the beginning, outdoor fountains were soley there to serve as functional elements. Water fountains were linked to a spring or aqueduct to supply drinkable water as well as bathing water for cities, townships and villages. Up until the nineteenth, fountains had to be higher and closer to a water source, including aqueducts and reservoirs, in order to take advantage of gravity which fed the fountains. Fountains were an optimal source of water, and also served to adorn living areas and celebrate the artist. Roman fountains usually depicted imagery of animals or heroes made of bronze or stone masks. During the Middle Ages, Muslim and Moorish garden designers included fountains in their designs to mimic the gardens of paradise. To show his prominence over nature, French King Louis XIV included fountains in the Garden of Versailles. The Romans of the 17th and 18th centuries created baroque decorative fountains to glorify the Popes who commissioned them as well as to mark the spot where the restored Roman aqueducts entered the city.

Since indoor plumbing became the standard of the day for clean, drinking water, by the end of the 19th century urban fountains were no longer needed for this purpose and they became purely decorative. The creation of special water effects and the recycling of water were 2 things made possible by swapping gravity with mechanical pumps.

These days, fountains decorate public spaces and are used to recognize individuals or events and fill recreational and entertainment needs.

Installation and Maintenance of Large Garden Fountains

Installing an outdoor wall fountain requires that you take into account the dimensions of the space where you are going to place it. A solid wall is absolutely needed to hold up its overall weight. Note that smaller areas or walls will need to have a lightweight fountain. In order to run the fountain, an electrical socket will need to be nearby. Most outdoor wall fountains include simple, step-by-step instructions according to the type of fountain.

Generally, when you purchase an outdoor wall fountain, it will come in an easy-to-use kit that will include all the information needed to install it properly. A submersible pump, hoses and basin, or reservoir, are included in the kit. If the size is average, the basin can be hidden away among your garden plants. Once fitted, wall fountains typically only require some light maintenance and regular cleaning.

Replenishing and purifying the water on a consistent basis is very important. Rubbish such as twigs, leaves or dirt should be cleared away quickly. Furthermore, outdoor fountains should always be shielded from freezing temperatures in winter. Your pump may crack when exposed to freezing water during the cold weather, so it is best to bring it indoors to avoid any damage. The bottom line is that if you properly maintain and care for your outdoor fountain, it will bring you joy for many years.

A Small Garden Space? Don't Fret! You Can Still Have a Water Feature

The reflective properties of water means it can make small areas look bigger than they are. In order to achieve the maximum reflective properties of a water element or fountain, it is best to use dark materials. If your intention is to showcase your new feature at night, underwater lights in various colors and shapes will do the trick. profit from the sun’s rays by using eco-lights during the day and underwater lights during the night. The comforting effect produced by these is oftentimes used in nature therapies to alleviate anxiety and stress.

The greenery in your garden is the perfect place to place your water feature. Your pond, artificial river, or fountain is the perfect feature to draw people’s attention. Small verandas or large gardens is the perfect place to install a water element. The best way to perfect the ambience, place it in a good place and use the right accompaniments.


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