Stone Seats and Benches in the Garden
Antique sandstone Bench from English Garden Antiques
See some great stone benches at the Stonepost website
Sunny Wieler, an Irish stonemason / artist, follows in his ancestors' tradition and wrote about making stone seats in his marvelous blog, Stone Art Blog (check it out!). Stone Art is his company which serves County Cork and Dublin. Here are some of his marvelous creations.
Sunny Wieler - Stone Art Blog
You might expect all stone seats to be massive and heavy but this is not the case. In the Chinese tradition, they fashion rounded stone seats (some are carved to look like drums) which encircle a stone table. You can see a great example in the Chinese garden at Naumkeag in Stockbridge.
Traditional Chinese stone table and stone seats
Following this idea, the wonderful designer Jinny Blom created Spore seats. Although not technically pure stone (they are made of a eco friendly moldable stone) they hark back to Chinese stone seats with a more modern flavor. I love them. They were a commissioned design for a permanent installation at London’s Design Centre Chelsea Harbour, which recently won a prestigious BALI Landscape Award.
Jinny Blom's Spore Seats
Another modern take on ancient stone benches is made by Escofet. Their Bilbao benches are also not pure stone but look how great they are.
Of course, benches can also be fashioned from a combination of wood seat and stonelegs like here in Carmel by the Sea in California. I think this combo is a great way to incorporate stone in a public setting....
If you want a great book about incorporating stone in the landscape look at this one: