The Many Faces of Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens

We knew we were setting course for Philadelphia where our friend Michael warmly welcomes us to his beautiful garden and home. We always look forward to catching up with him, relaxing at his pool and helping him out with various garden projects, of which there are many. His bus parking consists of a lovely three acre garden smack in the middle of the city with room for the kitties to roam and chase chipmunks. Tikita even caught one! More on that later… It is a little hectic getting in there through Philly traffic but after four visits we recognize the turns to make and we know we have to stop traffic in both directions on the residential street to back the bus up his garden driveway.

One suggestion we had from Sue and Richie was to visit Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens on
South St. When we mentioned this to Michael, of course he knew all about the Gardens and knows the creator, Isaiah Zagar. He even has a Zagar sculpture in his yard. The whole evolution of the gardens can be found here.

We made our way to South Street (Hurry on down…) with Michael at the wheel. It’s nice to be able to look around and observe instead of drive/navigate. Word of caution: don’t “lock” your bike on South St. Most of it will disappear. This is NOT MY BIKE!
The “gardens” were an amazing tableau of mosaic, mirrors, colored glass, bottles and fired ceramics, along with found objects like china, plates, glass block and statuary.
I took a few overall shots with my fisheye lens but it quickly became sensory overload and I decided to concentrate on the many faces incorporated into the designs. Michael said Isaiah always includes his own image into the art. Michael also said that although he had visited the Gardens many times he always sees something new. That is Art. And as Isaiah Zagar says and has inscribed many places in the Garden, “Art is the center of the real world.”

Some of the faces:


Michael and Jim in the Garden…
The next day Michael texted me at the bus and said he was going to unearth his Zagar sculpture. Michael said that vine was not invited to grow there and he set to work. Of course, we had to get Before, During and After pictures. I love the blue light reference to Randy.

More Philadelphia coming up. Then on to Reading, Goggleworks, friends from Texas and my national car convention. How convenient that they are all in the same place! Stay tuned.


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