Since time immemorial, mankind has been bringing the elements of nature indoors in controlled and beautiful ways: candlelight, houseplants, fans and water features remind us all of our primal roots. Water, in particular, is the one we are drawn to more than others: town squares have giant decorative fountains, and workers congregate around the water cooler the way that gazelles congregate around the watering hole on the savannah. Easily accessible water has always meant safety and security for our species, and that’s why the ever-present decorative table fountains we see indoors are such a soothing feature of modern interior design.
A table fountain’s quiet but constant bubbling sound recalls back to a time in our species’ collective memory; a time when running water meant plentiful water, a rarity and luxury in less civilized times. During times such as these, most people are fairly worried about their financial situations and “luxury” is almost a four-letter word. However, the subconscious, primal reassurance provided by the constant sound of the table fountain’s running water can ease many of these worries without even a conscious thought.
Additionally, table fountains have numerous health and emotional benefits as well. Since running water is charged with negative ions, it re-balances the positive ion charges brought about by pollutants, dust, and other irritants. Also, studies have shown that air that is charged with positive ions can cause or exacerbate sluggishness and even depression.
But balancing the ionization of the air isn’t the only health benefit that these fountains have to offer. Indeed, the running water acts as a natural humidifier, which helps to battle dry skin. Additional humidity in the air also helps reduce airborne detritus like dust, which reduces allergy flare ups and other respiratory problems brought on by unclean air.
The reasons to keep a water feature inside are legion, and whether table fountains tend to bring out the primal animal inside of you, or simply keep your air clean and your body energized, their popularity is clear. For as many thousands of years as mankind has relief on water, mankind will continue to create new, innovative ways to bring a little bit of the comforts of our primeval past into our controlled and civilized future. For now, though, the inexpensive and elegant simplicity of a decorative fountain that can fit on a table is novelty enough.