Terracotta Angel, c.1896
Watts Chapel, England

 Photo : Jeff Saward/Labyrinthos

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Contemporary Labyrinths

The current revival of interest in labyrinths has resulted in a number of designers and builders consciously stretching the boundaries of what constitutes a labyrinth, or deliberately seeking new forms for new purposes. Ranging from the minimalist, with just a few turns and paths to capture the essence of the labyrinth, to complex symbolic and thematic designs, they still retain a single pathway, leading sometimes to a centre, but other times around the full course of the design and back out.

Alex Champion's "Viking Age Horse Trappings Maze," with its complex swirling design, has one continuous pathway and typifies well the nature of contemporary labyrinths
( Earth Mazes)

Also included here are the Reflection and Relationship labyrinths that have become popular in recent years, which despite having more than one pathway are still labyrinths by intent. Undoubtedly, some of these modern varieties may go on to be judged as important separate developments when studied in the future, but for now this proliferation of forms can best be compared and contrasted within the "Contemporary" heading.

Labyrinth Typology

The Snoopy Labyrinth,
 designed by Lea Goode-Harris, stands in the grounds of the
 Charles M. Schultz Museum,
Santa Rosa, California, USA.
The single pathway takes the
 form of Snoopy’s head, with benches placed for sitting on his nose and ear

Photo : Jeff Saward/Labyrinthos

Next Page : Maze Typology - Previous Page

The dual-path “Heart Labyrinth,” by Marty Kermeen & Jeff Saward, has two paths, both leading to the centre and linking to the other path to return to the entrance. While technically multicursal, it is a labyrinth by intent

The modern ‘tourist’ labyrinths at Folhammar, Gotland, Sweden, are inspired by traditional stone labyrinths, but consist of numerous interconnected meanders and spirals, forming one long pathway covering a considerable area