Do you remember the fancy couch at your grandmother’s house that you weren’t allowed to sit on? You could imagine sitting on it, but that’s about it. This bridge is kind of like that couch. In the Japanese garden of an English estate, French artist Olivier Grossetête has used three enormous helium balloons to float a cedar planked bridge in the middle of a lake.
The balloons tug at the bridge, pulling the middle of the bridge out of the water but leaving its ends to fall below the surface of the murky water. The artist says that the bridge (which has since been removed) was able to support the weight of a person, but the bridge was never open to foot traffic so it remained unused in the middle of the lake during its tenure at Tatton Park. You can imagine walking on it, the bridge bobbing as you clamber across it. The installation was part of the Tatton Park Biennial which closed about a month ago and explored “Flights of Fancy.” And if the balloons made the bridge fly at all, it was the lack of use that made the bridge fancy.