Why do artful objects - such a sculptures, architectural artifacts, and birdbaths or empty garden urns have such an impact in the landscape or garden area? Well, it's like adding jewelry to a little black dress or a few bright pillows to a tired sofa. Art or ornamentation improve the garden's composition.
Garden decor should provide delight but it shouldn't complete with your plants. A well placed sculpture adds to the appearance. They communicate volumes about the gardener's own tastes & styles. While there is no right or wrong in something as subjective and personal, the general rule of scale and proportion, placement and balance are useful guidelines.
Think of scale as the heft of materials, shapes and forms, in relation to your home. For example a Victorian style home is often feminine in feeling with delicate touches. A contemporary home is more geometric and bare. Each of these styles requires compatible ornamentation in our around the garden area.
Where you place your artwork says a lot about it's role in the landscape design. A blue glazed ceramic garden planter might be fine at the bottom of porch steps, but looks fantastic when place in a shrub area where it's posed again dark green plants.
Stand in the yard, use your eye as a guide. Is there a bare spot under a green shrub? Why not place a garden animal statue like a bunny or bird. You need color by the pool but don't want leaves falling into the skimmer. How about a tall colorful cigar jar with nothing planted inside. Displayed as a piece of art it is stunning.
Lastly even though you can fill your garden & patio areas with all kinds of birdbaths, pottery, garden statues or more you also need to pay attention to the types of plant materials you use. Instead of the usual types of plants try grasses, & bamboos. There are so many different kinds of unusual items to plant with. And, remember that smart designs require restraint. Even if you like a particular plant or type of garden planters keep some restraint. Try to eliminate clutter!
Well placed objects will enhance your gardens' beauty and reflect your personal style.