The Asian Meadow pays homage to the years that Patterson and her family lived in China. Above a stream lined with water-loving plants, a group of six steel carp flash in mid-air. Following a tradition in Chinese painting, the carp stand for the artist’s family: five small fish for her children and one big fish for her husband. Nearby is a bridge designed in a zigzag pattern, in accordance with the traditional Chinese belief that evil spirits travel only in straight lines.
The pattern recurs in a wooden fence that zigzags along the brow of the hill, delineating a small picnic “room.” Set into the fence are green-glazed Chinese tiles of a type often used in Chinese gardens to screen and shape a view without blocking breezes or sunlight. In an echo of the tiles’ central motif, fences made of steel posts and wire cable are laid out in a diamond shape, protecting a variety of flowering shrubs from deer. A Japanese-style gong suspended from the branch of an ancient pine gives voice to the wind. Its hollow yet far-reaching sound adds an aural resonance of Asia to this otherwise quiet locale.