Source Fountain

Designers: Lawrence Halprin | City: Portland, OR | Project Type: linear park, park system
Date Visited: 12.12.12

Locations: close to SW Lincoln St and SW 1st Ave., Portland, OR
Completion Date: 1960s-1970s

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Moving from south to north, Lawrence Halprin’s Open Space Sequence begins with “The Source”, a fountain symbolizing the conceptual mountain spring that feeds into the fountains of Lovejoy Fountain Plaza, Pettygrove Park, and finally to the waterfalls of the Ira Keller Forecourt Fountain.

Source Fountain is the lesser known, oft-not mentioned piece of the sequence. Unlike the three other “outdoor rooms”, Source Fountain lacks identifying signage and is fairly small and modest in size. Built of stacked red brick, this material “speaks to the ground source and mineral content of artisian wells.”

Since I visited in December, the water had been turned off for winter. But here’s a photograph with the fountain turned on: water bubbles up in the middle and spills over the four sides.

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Source Fountain with water credit: brianbailey.us

Halprin’s Open Space Sequence is mostly structured along a linear pathway, with the exception of the Ira Keller Fountain which lies slightly off the path. Each park in the sequence is linked together by tree-lined pedestrian promenades.

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