Photo by Mike Barclay

Among the words that Bloomington stone carver Amy Brier uses to describe her sculpture “KOI POND” outside the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital in Indianapolis are “meditative,” “soothing,” “inspiring,” and “healing.”

The sculpture, which depicts koi fish swimming in rippling waters, is a finger labyrinth intended to be used as an interactive, meditative activity for visitors to the hospital.

“The hospital put out a call for artists for finger labyrinths to be included in a garden with the theme of ‘healing waters,’” Brier explains. “I had been carving koi for several years and the ideas came together.”

Brier created the design for “KOI POND” and made full-size drawings to be used as guidelines throughout the carving process. Ned Cunningham, head carver at Bybee Stone Co. in Ellettsville, Indiana, carved the benches that accompany the central sculpture. Brier and fellow carver Sharon Fullingim carved the central piece using patterns for each individual fish, frog, and flower.

“Sharon and I worked about a month carving the central piece,” says Brier, who co-founded of the Indiana Limestyone Symposium.

While the project’s architect determined the size and placement of the sculptures and provided the base, Brier made the choice to create a dome-shaped sculpture for ease of access. “KOI POND” is wheelchair accessible and designed for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy.