Designed as a memorial to Diana Princess of Wales, the fountain was opened in 2004. It was designed by Kathryn Gustafson (and her London office) to be a place of tranquility. It is a loop of finely sculptured granite. Water enters at the highest point and flows in two directions, meeting at the lowest point, from which it is recycled. The arrangement is capable of many symbolic interpretations: the circle of life; two people joining, parting and coming together as they leave the world; the meaninglessness of endeavour; a moebius strip; life and death. In the opening year (2004) there was an initial problem with children slipping on the wet granite, solved by bringing in security guards to stop them, and with the grass being trampled to mud by the unanticipated crowds. From the lakeside walk, the memorial fountain looks like a low concrete retaining wall protruding above the grass. When standing beside the water channel it can be seen for what it is: an extremely high quality piece of water sculpture. The design style could be classified either as Modern or as Postmodern. Since Gustafson has not given an account of the design's symbolism, 'Modernist' (even Minimalist) is probably best.
Hyde Park, London, Greater London, England
Open all year 10am to dusk.