Building Outdoor Fireplace Ideas... Gravity-Defying Stonework!
When building outdoor fireplace designs with stone, you can find a veri- table smorgasbord of ideas just by looking at the "world" around you. Of- ten, some of the best and most distinctive stone outdoor fireplaces are inspired by architectural and sculptural elements or objects completely unrelated to fireplace design!
Spend a day or two exploring your city or neighborhood for creative ideas. Public parks and gardens are a great place to start because they often contain water features, footbridges, and/or sculpture -- all of which may provide inspiration for building outdoor fireplace designs using stone.
Stone Sculpture Above & At Top Right By Thea Summer Alvin
PART II OF II
As I mentioned in
one of my favorite sources of inspiration is
walling. Stone sculptor Thea Summer Alvin, pictured at right, has even taken it a step further. Her circular stone sculptures are created without any mortar, whatsoever, and appear to defy gravity! A true master stone artisan, Thea says that "when other little girls were playing with dolls... I was eating my 15 pounds of dirt."
Clearly, the striking work featured here is the result of many years spent honing her craft. Based in rural Vermont, USA, Thea travels around the globe and has worked on restoring an ancient village in Italy.
As inspiration for building outdoor fireplace designs, Thea's circular stone sculptures are unique and dramatic. With some modification, the base of the circle can be transformed into a "firebox" fueled by either wood or gas.
Though the level of skill required to create the dry stone circle tops of Thea's sculptures may be virtually impossible to emulate, a highly com- petent stone mason will be able to create a design with structural in- tegrity . . . . . without significantly compromising the overall look and feel of Thea's sculptures. On the other hand, if you want the "real deal," you may contact Thea at her website, www.myearthwork.com.
Building outdoor fireplace designs inspired by the image that follows may be a bit of a stretch but, nevertheless, I wanted to share it with you. Part of a three section dry stone spiral sculpture, it is a remarkable example of the extraordinary work of Thea Summer Alvin!