The artifact that I chose was an iron garden chair from the early 19th century. This piece of furniture was revolutionary in its design mostly because of the material it used. It was made out of cast iron, which was produced in a factory, apposed to all of the handcrafted furnishings that had been done in the past. This chair is also part of a revolution because it was made during the reign of Queen Victoria, which in those times gardens were very important. The designs for garden furniture often incorporated motifs from nature like fern patterns.2.
Artifact: Monet Painting
The eastern influence in Monet’s painting is very apparent. In eastern cultures, especially in China they were very focused on nature and how it affected their daily lives. They worshiped nature through religion and depicted it through art, furniture, and even buildings. Then when this idea reached western regions people thought that if they lived among beautiful things then their life would be beautiful as well. This painting represents not only a beautiful Lilly pond but also a way of life, a life of peace and serenity.
Space: The Peacock Room
The Peacock room is a room with many eastern influences. The ornament in the room is very nature inspired and also defines the different spaces and compartments. The shelving system represents bamboo, which is a very prominent plant in Asia and serves many purposes. In Asian cultures it is customary to respect the things that give them daily needs, so in order to pay respect to these things like bamboo they represent it through ornamentation. Another eastern influence would be the rich colors on the walls. The hue seems to represent the vivid textiles that the eastern cultures use in clothing. Even down to the lighting in this room eastern influences are apparent. I feel that westerners looked to the east to design because they were putting a spin on their own classical designs.
Building: The Royal Pavilion
The pavilion has a very middle- eastern appearance on the outside, with the high ornamentation on the façades and rotundas. The building was also heavily influenced by Chinese and Indian fashions, which can be seen inside and out. It has a very exotic feel but with a mainstream taste.
Place: Green Bank Gardens
The Green Bank Gardens were designed to be like a serene garden of the Chinese culture. It was supposed to be a walled place where one could go and think. It was not for the purpose of recreation at all. It was a serene place that offered balance and centrality, which was the main focus for eastern gardens as well. They were places to enjoy and respect nature while you contemplated the world around you.