The web site for all professionals and consumers who've made or want to make water a part of their lives


        April 23, 2014                                                                                                                                                                  




Organic Artistry        

To see what happens when a watershape is completely, entirely, organically linked to architecture, you need look no farther than the work of John Lautner and many of the projects he completed before his death in 1994.  Mentored by Frank Lloyd Wright, Lautner saw pools and other waterfeatures as integral components in compositions of great and enduring beauty, says Helena Arahuete, who was in turn mentored by Lautner and is now the principle  architect in the firm that still bears his name. 

This article, originally published in November/December 2000, has been digitized for all readers.  Click here to see the full text and enlarge the images to study the craftsmanship in detail.


The Driving Force
Dropping a submersible pump into the skimmer brings this pond project a big step closer to completion.  Along with showing how it's done through this video, Eric Triplett takes the opportunity to sound off emphatically on a couple of important installation-related topics.  [more]
Safe Lighting Around Pools

Lots of contractors operate under the assumption that it's safe to use low-voltage lighting systems close to their watershapes.  But they're wrong in most cases, writes Paolo Benedetti, citing important (and often overlooked) provisions of the National Electric Code[more] 


Art for Art's Sake
Draped across a mountaintop overlooking Los Angeles, the Getty Center is truly monumental and well worth a visit.  If you can pull your attention away from the galleries while there, observes Jim McCloskey, you'll see spaces uniquely moderated and defined by the use of water[more] 
Healing Waters   

Located at a major California university, the Brown Center is a teaching facility designed to help caregivers figure out ways to meet patients' specific needs.  Here, Belinda Stillwell describes how this resource serves not only students, but also the surrounding community.  [more]  

Swimming Pools in the American Mind:
Cadillac 'Poolside' Commercial
Sparks Controversy, Derision

Advancing Technology   

When Mark Holden wrote about the importance of being open to new ideas and technologies back in April 2009, he didn't mince any words -- as you'll see here in an extract from a classic 'Currents' column.  [more]
A Triple Play

In preparing this edition of WaterShapes EXTRA, Jim McCloskey enjoyed his recollections of how three of its stories came together -- and shares details of the behind-the-scenes discussions that led to some unconventional choices with respect to authorship.  [more]
© Alain Lacroix |
Now at . . . 

While supplies last, you can purchase one of 6 available complete, mint-condition, 131-issue sets of WaterShapes, a print publication that set the tone for development of the art and craft of watershaping from February 1999 until July 2011.  For a special, newly discounted offer, click here!
He's baaaaaack!  Michael Phelps
Returns to competitive Swimming
Many water-related stories have been in the news of late -- including reports connected to the three questions below.


  According to, U.S. swimming superstar Michael Phelps has revealed his intention to return to competitive swimming despite his announced "retirement" after the 2012 London Olympics. CNN describes Phelps as "the most decorated Olympian of all time."  How many Olympic medals has Phelps won?  

          a. 18                              b. 20                                c. 22                                 d. 24

2.  The Web site reports that the competitive career of longtime Australian Olympic swimmer Ian "the Thorpedo" Thorpe reportedly may be coming to a final end because of a serious infection he contracted following recent surgery.  (Like Michael Phelps, Thorpe retired previously but later attempted a comeback.)  What part of his body did the surgery involve?

          a. Leg                           b. Shoulder                    c. Back                             d. Neck

3.  A "revolutionary," small-scale, solar thermal plant developed by researchers at the University of Newcastle will produce both electricity and heat -- the latter to be used for heating a public swimming pool.  In what country are both the University of Newcastle and the demonstration solar plant located?

          a. U.K.                          b. New Zealand            c. Canada                       d. Australia

To find out how many you got right, click here.



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