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FOLLIES: ARCHITECTURAL WHIMSY IN THE GARDEN

Something new coming to the Winterthur Garden? Absolutely! So mark your calendars for 2018. You won’t want to miss the opportunity to experience a Winterthur “First”— Follies: Architectural Whimsy in the Garden, an exhibit of whimsical and classic garden structures located throughout the estate. Whether by foot or by tram, day or evening, you can’t help but be enchanted by these one-of-a-kind structures. Follies are architectural constructions, often extravagant or picturesque, positioned within the landscape to amuse, frame a view, or pique your curiosity. Follies can display an owner’s taste in architecture, knowledge of design history, or sense of whimsy. They can be used for outdoor entertainment such as lunch, tea, or musical performances or can simply be a destination when touring a garden. A well-placed folly may lure you to explore or draw your eye to an especially beautiful vista.

Fig. 1. The Bristol Summerhouse. In 1960, H. F. du Pont commissioned architect George Howe of Washington, D.C., to make drawings of a summerhouse in Bristol, Rhode Island, so that it could be re-created at Winterthur. Placed atop Sycamore Hill, it offers sweeping views of the rolling hills and ponds. Photo by Bob Leitch.

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