For this year’s Chelsea Fringe Festival Borrowed Light Floral Studio have created a trio of suspended sculptures inspired by the water cycle and the local flora of the Walthamstow Wetlands.
Floating within the Turbine Room, reeds harvested from the Walthamstow Wetlands have been blended with Lunaria and Gypsophila to create a wispy cloud of dried floral material. This sculpture represents the condensation part of the water cycle, where water vapour cools and turns back into a liquid.
In the Boiler Room, a shower of shimmering seed heads fall like raindrops from a hollow cloud form.
Against the building’s exterior, a large willow branch forms the base for a cascade of Cymbidium orchids, representing the flowing torrent of a waterfall. This represents the collection stage of the water cycle but shows the challenge of containing water, which will travel and create its own path. Cymbidium orchids are a nod to the native Bee Orchid, growing onsite.
Open to the public since October 2017, Walthamstow Wetlands is a fully operational 211 hectare Thames Water reservoir site, which is the main source of water supply for 3.5 million people. Walthamstow Wetlands is also an internationally important nature reserve, providing home and shelter to a wide range of wildlife, from rare waterfowl to majestic birds of prey.
The locally-listed Engine House, including the Visitor Centre and Café, has been redesigned and redeveloped with the addition of a unique swift tower to attract nesting swifts and roosting bats, whilst the Grade II-listed Coppermill Tower offers a viewing platform to enjoy sweeping views of the capital.