SAVE THE DATE 31 July - 24 September
The Sculpture Garden at Ashridge House
Welcome to the inaugural sculpture exhibition at Ashridge House. Set across 190 acres of our historic grounds, the Sculpture Garden celebrates and illustrates the natural world as well as the unique legacy of the property. The exhibition invites guests to pause and reflect on the gift of life itself: from fruit and fertility to the cruel realities of mankind. Presenting work by contemporary sculptors, the exhibition champions living artists who communicate their unique perspectives through their mediums. With half of the participating artists creating large scale sculpture being women, we address a balance required in our society to look beyond our preconceptions.
Showcasing 15 Sculptors, including some of your favourites; Veda Hallowes MRSS, Jenny Pickford and Helen Sinclair MRSS. Jenny Pickford has had astounding success over the past few years with public commissions. Her largest work on display at Ashridge will be winging its way from Glastonbury Festival. We have some truly wonderful artists for you to learn about and enjoy exploring over the summer months.
We are honoured to be showing and working with Diane Maclean FRSS
As the viewer moves through the garden they encounter Diane Maclean’s latest work; Crown of Leaves, which was made specifically for the Fernery at Ashridge House.
As a heralded environmental artist with a distinguished sculpture career spanning over 5 decades, Maclean is motivated by capturing the elemental and ephemeral in substantial form. Thus, the Fernery is the perfect location to showcase the artist’s work. Diane Maclean has a vast array of thought provoking public works throughout the globe. The Late Queen unveiled her ‘Open Book’ donated by the UK to the city of Paris.
The Fernery, designed by Mathew Digby Wyatt in 1864, was built with the sole dedication of growing ferns. With its many windows that allow light to flood in, the space evokes a sense of natural tranquillity and new life. Crown of Leaves interacts with the light; the metal leaves refracting the sun’s rays and gently swaying in the breeze. Through its composition and playful yet delicate reaction to its environment, the piece reminds the viewer of the fragile majesty of the natural world.
Also in the Sculpture Garden, along the 200-metre-long path lined with towering fir trees known as Berkhamsted Avenue, is Diane Maclean’s Lines of Light. The ‘brushed’ steel offers a blurred reflection of its surroundings and the subtle nuances and tones of natural light as the day passes. Maclean’s other featured pieces include Snake in the Grass, Cradle and Pyramids of Light. Each work further explores the artist’s subject in imaginative and contemplative ways, subverting traditional perceptions of sculpture through modern techniques.
Among our new sculptors are GILES PENNY ARBS, known widely for his public sculptures in London and SALLY DE COURCY MRSS, with her prize winning installation on migration. We welcome back ED ELLIOTT with his Greer Guardian Angel, the kinetic genius DAVID WATKINSON and lots more for you to discover.
Whilst The Sculpture Garden™ will not be held in Cookham in 2022 there are other events in the planning. Keep posted for the next SG happening. Cookham Festival will be putting together their own art event this year so do continue to support this lovely creative arts festival and visit them in May 2022.
With all our fingers and toes crossed we can announce that The Sculpture Garden will be opening on 8th May 2021. Despite all the recent upheaval and muddle and stress of COVID many artists have found it a reflective work period. Some have developed new pieces, others worked on commissions and for some of us it has been a time of a creative halt. With deadlines now being set of shows REALLY happening artists are taking up the tools and putting all those pondering into action. The artists pledge on Instagram #artistsupportpledge has been a success but all living artists now need your support. IMAGINE LOCKDOWN WITHOUT THOSE CREATIVE PEOPLE giving you stories, music, art and all things creative. It would have been unbearable. Support living artists. We can't wait to share with you some new artists for 2021. Stay well and take a look at your outdoor spaces you must now know so well and where you need to add a artwork
The Sculpture Garden at the Odney Club, curated by Lucy Irvine, again proved a huge draw for the art lovers and Cookham Festival crowds. Not everyone can or will afford a massively impressive sculpture such as the monumental white figures (Lilly Henry) “Back to back” beneath the spreading cedar trees of the Odney Club but what a joy to have the opportunity to enjoy them all. Many buyers settled for a bright blue bird bath or a water feature by popular artist, Sarah Cox. All the sculptors are British working artists and throughly deserve to have their work showcased and sold at outstanding events such as the Sculpture Garden. This is, intentionally, not a craft show with 50p eggcups on sale but a Sculpture Garden for serious sculpture by serious artists. The grand gardens of Cookham’s Odney Club deserve nothing less. Lucy Irvine, as curator, took her role seriously and stepped up to and beyond the expectations of the Festival audience and of the John Lewis management who kindly allow use of the gardens at the Odney Club for the Sculpture Garden. The exhibition started with a private view for previous collectors and on the opening day, a public chainsaw demonstration by the successful wood artist Simon O’Rourke.
This year Lucy was keen to show a collection of Young Bloods i.e young graduates such as Freddie Churchill and Royal College of Art post graduate student and V&A artist in residence, Emily Stapleton Jefferis. Word about the high standard of work on show at the Sculpture Garden had reached the ear of The Royal Society of British Sculptors (RSBS) who took the trouble to visit this year and to take note of some of the young sculptors, and to their delight, tagged them on instagram. Many curators came along and commented on the strength of the exhibition and took note of several artists on show. The Long Walk was filled with kinetic sculpture, moving in the breeze and catching the eye. Several pieces sold well and the gently turning leaves by David Watkinson were, rightly, hugely admired.
Alongside work by the Young Bloods and the avenue of kinetic sculptors was work by the internationally acclaimed artists, Nicolas Moreton and Jenny Pickford. Nicholas has several international commissions under his belt and has been proclaimed as “the finest stone sculpture tin Britain today”. Jenny has been working with galvanised steel for some years. In recent years she has incorporated her own blown glass into her sculptures making them ever more attractive. Her work, although cast in steel, has all the grace of a fine line drawing.
Lucy also edited a short film of some of the artist at work in their studios. This was on show in the Bernard Miller Centre - a film not to be missed by anyone interested in the process of making sculpture and of how artists work. Also shown for the first time were some examples of what is now termed 2nd Generation Sculpture - smaller versions of original work produced via 3D imaging by Lucy and Public Art Services UK. Lydia Karpinska’s Springtime rabbit proved very popular in this latest version and Lucy Ryan's Little Devils are irresistible in this version.
Around 5000 visitors passed through the gates of the Odney Club to enjoy the spectacle of the Sculpture Garden - the best ever as several visitors mentioned.
If you missed this outstanding highlight of the Cookham Festival you can still see and buy some of
the larger works or new maquettes by contacting email@example.com visit our gallery page again soon where larger work for sale will be listed in the near future.
Next week we will be sending off our invitations to The Private View,
If you're not on our mailing list then get signed up now.
Our exclusive opening is on Friday 3rd May.
A quick heads up on a couple of extra features at The Sculpture Garden this year.
We open to the public with a riot of sculptural skills, The Sculpture Garden is putting on a chainsaw demonstration by Simon O’Rourke.
Simon is one of the exhibiting artists and has been featured on Countryfile,
commissioned by The Forestry Commission and was asked to take part in the next
Game of Thrones campaign, promoting season eight of the popular TV series.
Only18 artists from around the world were selected by HBO, who then sent them
an original prop from the Game of Thrones series.
What did he make from his dragon eggs...?
Chainsaw demonstration by Simon will take place on
Saturday 4th May, Starting at midday...until its finished!
The Sculpture Garden, Odney Club,
Odney Lane, Cookham, SL6 9SR
The images show Simon receiving his dragon eggs and a swinging fairy...
Do come and enjoy watching this remarkable skill and meet the artist.
Another new element at The Sculpture Garden this year is a short film documenting artists making their work.... I've yet to receive all the interesting bits of footage from the artsits but I can assure you it will be an insightful and interesting short film on the working processes of the artists. Many stories to discover this year...
The image below shows the renowned stone sculptor Nicolas Moreton at work.
With over 100 sculptures for sale by professional working artists and acres of lovely gardens to explore make sure you get along to see the exhibition.
The Sculpture Garden is on daily 10 am - 4pm until 19th May.
£2 donation to Cookham Festival of The Arts.
Yes, The Sculpture Garden will be filled with fun, colour and form, be a feast for your eyes and a lift for your spirit. The Sculpture Garden 2019 also brings a vision which observes, digests and rises up against the fast pace and disregard in our present society. How do our observations on our current social evolution impact our choices and ways of consuming?
The Sculpture Garden is:
Friendly and appreciative of our friends and loyalty - we welcome back some favourites.
Open and inviting - we introduce many new artists.
Supporting of the new brave - there is a new section entitled “Young Blood” showcasing those with enough folly and pluck to embark on a career in the arts.
In these uncertain times we focus on presenting work which is sustainable and has longevity. Many of our artists this year work with stone, a solid material which will remain for many, many generations to come. This work takes skill, patience and time. The stone sculpture of Nicolas Moreton has captured the imagination and acclaim of many an art critic: Tim Marlow, Brain Sewell and George Melly, to name a few. Stone has been utilised in sculptures in Cathedrals and Temples for good reason. The energy that the maker places into the work over the time and contemplation required resonate with the viewer from these sculptures.
We envisage our clients responding well to the art form of stone sculpture in the current transitional society in which we find ourselves. Stone, wood, metal, glass and ceramic echo the stability of the earth and ground us, so, connect with this work this year, fall in love with it and if the purse allows, purchase it. We welcome one and all to enjoy these fabulous sculptures and support these committed talented artists.
Follow us on social media to see profiles of artists, snippets of arty thoughts and tasters of the sculptures on show in May.
Make a date in your diary - Private View Friday 3rd May
Open to the public daily 10am - 5pm
Saturday - Sunday 19th May
The Sculpture Garden
The Odney Club, Odney Lane
Cookham, Berkshire, SL69SR
The 2019 Sculpture Garden sees a wonderful collection of kinetic artists bringing their vision and creations to The Sculpture Garden in Cookham. These mesmerising artworks can bring delight and wonder into your garden outdoor spaces surrounding private houses, hotels & venues of note. The work by Richard Cresswell was extremely well received by visitors and buyers alike in 2017. This year we introduce David Watkinson and Stuart Stockwell alongside Richard.
Kinetic art contains movement perceivable by the viewer. Since the early twentieth century artists have been incorporating movement into art. Movement can be used to reflect the importance of the machine and technology in the modern world or purely add beauty and an element of unexpected to the artwork.
One of the first kinetic artists who used mechanical functions was Naum Gabo in the 1920s. In the 1930s Alexander Calder started using natural movement in his work by creating mobiles. Kinetic art became a major phenomenon of the late 1950s and the 1960s and has recently seen a surge in more commercial art markets. Kinetic sculptures are now being embraced into domestic settings rather than exclusive to art institutions and corporate places.
FORBIDDEN FRUIT II
An apple is said to be the begging of all. The apple, not only as a symbol, is following a human from the very begging of his history. Tearing the apple off the Tree of Knowledge of Good an Evil forms the base for the original sin.
Those who of who purchased work by the fabulous sculptor, Jenny Pickford at our last Sculpture Garden will be pleased to know that her work was highly desired and purchased at a recent auction at Christies in October -an edition of her 'Alium' flower sold well to raise funds for QEST. We are looking forward to seeing the latest work by Jenny in May 2017.