Scene Design 1993
Borderlands Theatre Company
In Democracy (or one whole day beside a pond), John Murell creates a ficticious encounter between Walt Whitman and Ralph Waldo Emerson in a forest outside of Washington D.C.during the Civil War in 1863. The location is meant to be a natural refuge from the war raging around them, a sanctuary for elevated dialogue between the two writers that wrote so eloquently of the human spirit in the American landscape.
The set design needed to reflect the poetic nature of the script, including the exciting friction of opposites and a feeling of mystical sensuality from an ideal Nature.The groundplan is a hill, (covered with mixed types of velour, velvet and fake fur) tree trunks(made of steel rebar) and a 4' deep pond stage left surrounded by "rocky" levels. The leaf canopy is made of painted aluminum.