Friday 24 August 2012

Intriguing incidents in the landscape at Kedleston Hall

Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire
Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire
The National Trust has increasingly started commissioning and displaying contemporary art in its houses and gardens, on the admirable basis that the contents of them shouldn't stay entirely static and self-regarding. The latest installation, at Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire, mixes outdoor sculpture with listening and attending to the landscape.

The art and architecture practice, Studio Weave, has installed what it calls Hear Heres in the designed landscape of Kedleston's 18th century parkland. These are huge listening trumpets/horns which are intended to connect the listener to the world in a new way. You have to pause, and listen; the horns magnify the sounds of the wider landscape, bringing them closer and into greater focus. Those who care to stop and pay attention will be able to experience the sounds of the landscape in a new way, in greater detail.

A new walk taking in the Hear Heres opens on 15 September. The walk takes around one and a half hours (with shorter routes available).

Kedleston Hall was completed in the 1760's for the Curzon family and is one of the most complete surviving examples of Robert Adam's work. Adam designed not only the house but buildings in the parkland too. He referred to the man-made points of interest in the landscape as incidents. Now, courtesy of Studio Weave, there are a new set of incidents in the landscape; quite whether they will live up to the beauty of the 18th century ones is for visitors to decide, but they certainly sound intriguing.

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