Discover a magical world of childhood fantasies come true during Fairy Houses & Forts: An Enchanting Garden Adventure open May 19 through Oct. 7.
The exhibition will include seven large-scale fairy houses and fanciful forts to inspire, amuse and ignite an interest in exploring the great outdoors, along with whimsical garden displays and an indoor display of small-scale fairy gardens and houses.
Selected through a competition among architects, artists and landscape architects, the winning entries showcase the region’s creativity and talent.
The exhibition installations include:
Ice Haus by Denise DiPiazzo’s Red Trike Studios
Enter into the fantasy world of the Ice Fairy. In her realm, ice freezes in summer and melts in winter. Take cool refuge in her house made of ice—a dwelling as cool and clear as winter’s breeze.
Mirror-Mirror by Norwegian Wood
Can you find this fort hidden right in plain sight? Built from mirrored safety glass, this fort reflects its surroundings and blends into the landscape. The net result is a hiding spot perfect for parents and kids. The top of the tower offers a giant periscope for viewing up in the trees. “Mirror, mirror in the trees, invisible and hard to see. I see you, you can’t see me!”
Light Wings Pavilion
Light Wings Pavilion by DA+UD creates an ever-changing experience through the interplay of light and shadow. Sunlight enters the pavilion through a cut out in the roof casting illuminated fairy wings along the opposite wall. Children can interact with the light, imagining themselves with their own fairy wings. Smaller fairy wing cut outs adorn panels throughout, lighting up at various times as the sun moves across the sky. The pavilion is constructed of otherwise unusable 2x4 drops, a common waste product of any construction site. Arranged around a radius, the leftover boards create a relatively smooth interior surface and a dynamic exterior surface.
This creation by Convergence Design with Henderson Engineers engages visitors in an imaginary tale. Adventurers will discover an island taken over by pirates who plunder ships in Shipwreck Cove. The pirates watch over all traffic on the water from their fort, which was constructed from salvaged material from sunken ships. A treasure map encourages visitors to Skeleton Island to follow the dotted line to a treasure chest of small natural wonders that can be found in other places within Powell Gardens.
Fairy Outpost 8
Fairy Outpost 8 by Kelly Cook and George Berry peeks into the secret life of fairies. This secret site has been used by fairies for many years, but recently has been abandoned as they work on other areas of the garden. Being a hidden folk, the fairies built a structure to blend into nearby surroundings to meet and plan their upcoming gardens. They used many found and natural materials with a touch of sparkle to decorate their space.
Star Tetrahderon by LaMair Design Studio Inc. is discovered via a wandering path. The path leads to a star tetrahedron (a triangular pyramid) where children can duck inside to dream up adventures. The small square entrance opens into the star tetrahedron created from recycled wood, peeled log poles and plastic "jewels." Once inside, dreamers can delight in the soft light that filters through the translucent white "jewels" on top. Two triangular openings invite visitors to crawl or look through this geometric space.
Point of View
Point of View by Kimball Hales and Laura Hales of Play Modern Ltd. is sure to be loved by parents and children alike. Point of View is intended as a place to stop and appreciate the view. The fort’s opening creates a "picture frame" that sets off a distant landscape feature that otherwise may have gone unnoticed. The sandbox below provides a great play stop for the younger set—making it a great spot to wrap up this tour of creativity.
Special Thanks to Our Sponsors
Sponsored by: The Missouri Arts Council, a state agency, Kansas City Power & Light and The William T. Kemper Foundation-Commerce Bank Trustee. The exhibition is endorsed by the Kansas City Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, the Prairie Gateway Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects and the Kansas City Art Institute.
Did you know? Powell Gardens is offering a LEGO themed birthday party option to coincide with the Nature Connects exhibit. Learn more »