Most fountains operate in the same basic way, eventhough they can look very different. An electric pump pushes water up a hose, where the flow emerges from the fountain head. Gravity pulls the water down to produce the return flow that ends within the basin, where the fountain resides to push the water up in a continuous loop.
Fountains in history were often central sources of drinking water for communities, which were increasingly used by society’s elites to demonstrate engineering and/or agricultural prowess. Control of water is central to the functions of cities + farms. Baroque fountains, especially at a royal scale, were highly decorated expressions of pure power.
- pumps: keep your pump running year-round to prolong the life of the pump + to maintain water clarity. You can expect the pump to work for one to three years, so expect to replace it upon failure.
- water level: expecially in the summer months, when evaporation rates are very high, keep water levels in the optimal range. Never let the water level drop to where the pump sits to prevent damage.
- debris: occassionally sweep the fountain for plant litter + other obstacles that may clog the works.
- water plants: aquatic vegetation can be added to many fountains to add beauty + help keep the water clean.
A fountain’s unique combination of complexity and subtlety can inspire the intellect. The most meaningful fountains are capable of carrying a metaphor through both phenomenalogical + psychological dimensions at the same time. Fountains are manifestations of aesthetics discharging a flow of energy through movement + sound.
Projects that feature a fountain: