Bramhall Square Picnic proposes an artificial terrain of larger-than-life reclining stone bears as playful yet versatile street furniture. A mischievous response to the square’s distant vista of the New Hampshire mountains, they float lazily on blueberry bush clouds and invoke weathered stone outcroppings in their figurative abstraction.
Within more immediate urban surroundings, this sculptural intervention is carefully considered to promote greater synergy between:
1. Residents of the Parkside neighborhood
2. Visitors to nearby Maine Medical Center
3. The adjacent restaurant location, to better serve both groups.
While elongated bear legs, bear necks, and bear heads provide ample bench-height seating, their protruding bellies and rumps form modest perches and good climbing for young visitors.
One of few walkable ammeneties adjacent to the Maine Medical Center campus and the most contemplative nearby viewshed, this proposal recognizes a special imperative to serve hospital visitors alongside residents of the Parkside neighborhood.
Benevolent monsters are a familiar theme in childrens’ literature, especially in stories that address complex emotion. Intended to be sweet and playful with subtle notes of menace and melancholy, these forms aim to serve as both playscape elements and protective effigies. A foil for a wide range of emotion, Bramhall Square Picnic is meant as a good setting for a game of tag, a nice sandwich, or a good long cry if that’s what a visitor needs- with gusto all around.
Proposed here in clay maquettes, shaped and joined blocks of granite are the bears’ intended final material. Made from regionally sourced stone that echoes their mountain view, these three figures are carefully designed to weather and age imperceptibly over centuries.