Yard Art: Artistic Expression or Neighborhood Nuisance?

Yard Art: Artistic Expression or Neighborhood Nuisance?
  • Opening Intro -

    It has been said that "art is in the eye of the beholder."

    Clearly, this statement must have been made by the person whose artistic ability was being questioned.


Perhaps it started with that bronze sculpture on display at the local museum which raised the eyebrows of patrons, who wondered just how the winner of Mrs. Kleermacher’s 4th grade art contest was able to showcase her work in a very public setting. Or, it could be that 16-foot “artistic expression” placed in the town center by the art league which resulted in numerous letters to the editor of the weekly journal calling for its banishment at once.

If you haven’t figured out that I am in a teasing mood, then rest assured that I am. I am also speaking as your anonymous neighbor who wishes you would tone down your personal collection of yard art.

I’m fine with a handful of medieval characters frolicking around your shrubbery, but when they start to crawl across your lawn to the street, then questioning your taste becomes everyone’s prerogative. Never mind that you branched out and have blended in cutesy stone frogs and polymerized Disney characters — your mix and match yard sculptures have stretched the definition of art and simply are in bad taste.

Before the entire block calls for a meeting of the neighborhood association to update the compact (rules) to ban all yard creatures, please take action at once by:

1. Culling your critters. Anything taller than a foot and those characters found within the six foot side and front property buffers should be removed. You can sell off what doesn’t fit at, you guessed it, your next yard sale.

2. Relocating the flock. Your backyard’s privacy fence is adequate to hide your work from nosy neighbors and prying eyes. Sure, you want to showcase your possessions, but that is best done out of the view of the families who live adjacent to your property and are objecting the loudest.

Once you have cleaned up your lawn we’ll make sure that the neighborhood association doesn’t enact a fresh set of rules to constrain everyone further. For goodness sake, Mr. Monsanto would be upset if his cast iron sundial could no longer be displayed and I would hate to tell Mrs. Lillington that her terra cotta pot collection has to go.

Personally, I’m fond of my garden fauns which double as reindeer as soon as the holiday season arrives. What?! Are you questioning my taste?


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About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".