Patrick Dougherty Creates at the Garden

Preparation for the Exhibit

Internationally renowned artist Patrick Dougherty artist-in-residence at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, May 2 - 22, 2011, during "Meadowmorphosis"

See photos of Patrick Dougherty's Work


For three weeks in May, visitors to the Garden will witness the creation of a monumental, site-specific sculpture made Stickwork sculptor Patrick Doughertyentirely of woven sticks and twigs by internationally renowned artist Patrick Dougherty. Dougherty arrives at the site of each new installation with no preconceptions as to what he will create. Using locally gathered natural materials and drawing on inspiration from the surrounding environment, he designs larger-than-life sculptures that may remind visitors of a nest, cocoon, or even a fairy dwelling.

Dougherty will leave the Garden a distinctive architectural element that will remain in the Anderson Meadow for as long as it survives in the natural environment. To date, Patrick Dougherty has completed more than 175 works at gardens, universities, and museums throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. Dougherty's new book, "Stickwork" was also recently featured in People Magazine. To view more of Patrick Dougherty’s projects, visit his website at  

Learn more about the exhibit and related activities.


In preparation for Dougherty's installation, the Garden is working to create a perfect spot for the sculpture. The Anderson Meadow, just west of the Conservatory and above Sydnor Lake, offers both a majestic viewing point and friendly access for visitors who are curious to learn about Dougherty's work and the creation process. As this recent New York Times article describes, much of the process is about interacting with visitors. The finished product is a collaborative effort of Garden volunteers, Dougherty and his asisstant.

In October of 2010 during HandsOn Greater Richmond Day, the Garden was lucky enough to have volunteers help us HandsOn Day volunteers prepare Lewis Ginter's Anderson Meadow for Dougherty's stickworkprepare the Anderson Meadow into a beautiful wildflower oasis for Dougherty's installation.  Volunteers planted Black-Eyed Susan, Rough-Stemmed Goldenrod, Gayfeather, Aster tataricus 'Jin Dai', Chrysopis villosa, Helianthus, Willow Leaf Sunflower, Schizachyrium 'Prairie Blues', Andropogon gerardii, Rough Blazing Star, and Missouri Cone Flower. These wildflowers will provide a colorful backdrop for the sculpture.

MAY 2011


From May 2 – 4, 2011, internationally renowned artist Patrick Dougherty and a team of area volunteers harvested local sticks and saplings for a monumental, site-specific sculpture planned at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden. The materials were procured in a sustainable manner by thinning trees on private, rural tracts of land. Three to five tractor trailer loads of sticks and saplings were collected and transported to the Garden during the three-day period.

The Virginia Department of Forestry worked closely with Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden and Dougherty to identify material sources. Private landowners in Chesterfield and Hanover Counties will provide access to red maple and sweet gum.

A team of local volunteers from the Garden assisted Dougherty in the harvesting, as well as the construction of the sculpture. Dougherty is artist-in-residence at the Garden from May 2 – 22, providing these volunteers a once-in-a-lifetime experience and offering visitors a rare glimpse into the creative process.  Since the sculpture will be built in the Anderson Wildflower Meadow, the Garden is calling this time-frame “Meadowmorphosis.”


See video and photos of the sculpture as it is being built.

A time-line of photos of the build.


Sticking with it: Sapling structure at Lewis Ginter; Richmond Times-Dispatch; May 14, 2011

Sculpting with Sticks and Stones; Daily Press; May 14, 2011

Virginia This Morning; WTVR-6; May 13, 2011

Photos of Patrick Dougherty's Work

Patrick Dougherty sculpture at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

Here's Looking at You; photo by Richard Levy




Uff Da Palace, The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, photo by Todd Hulvihill




Close Ties

Close Ties, photo by Fin Macrae






Childhood dreams


Childhood Dreams






Patrick Dougherty at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden/Meadowmorphosis is:

Presented by

Sponsored in part by:

The Peach Tree House Foundation

The Reynolds Foundation

Mr. and Mrs. Robert E. Anderson

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Mooney

Mr. and Mrs. John Snow