We have had some arresting images from Tom who is giving the talk which I'll intersperse with text:
The National Trust’s ‘Trust New Art’ programme sees around 40 NT properties take part in a programme of commissions supported by Arts Council England from 2014-2018. Using some stunning and surprising examples, Tom Freshwater, the Trust’s Contemporary Arts Programme Manager, will explain how the programme is grounded in the history and spirit of the National Trust’s places such as Ickworth, Croome, Knole, Felbrigg, Attingham, Petworth, Kedleston, A La Ronde and others which have art and creativity at their core. Pleasure grounds, gardens and designed landscapes are aesthetic creations that give amazing experiences of place. By working with living artists responding to this legacy the National Trust aims to bring it to life for visitors today.
Above: 'Spontaneous City in the Cedar of Lebanon' by London Fieldworks at Clumber Park
From Trust New Art, the National Trust’s contemporary arts programme, has emerged some wondrous and exciting artistic responses. Taking her inspiration from six key items in the collection, Corinne Felgate has created a trail of sculptures throughout Hughendon Manor and its grounds, unveiling the stories and significance behind each object. Luke Jerram has created a new artwork hidden in the depths of Leigh Woods near Bristol exploring ideas connected to the sustainability of our natural world. Inspired by a quote from the 1930s visitors’ book, describing Packwood House in Warwickshire as ‘a house to dream of, a garden to dream in’, artist Hilary Jack has created a giant sized outdoors four-poster bed, sunken into the landscape and filled with turf. Tom Freshwater, the Trust’s Contemporary Arts Programme Manager, will explore how working with artists like these can create new experiences at familiar places.
Above: 'Withdrawn' by Luke Jerrams in Leigh Woods near Bristol.
The National Trust’s contemporary arts programme ‘Trust New Art’ comissions living artists to should start a conversation about the relationship between past and present, giving visitors new viewpoints and exploring the spirit of their places. The ten niches carved into the Long Gallery’s walls at Croome Court in Worcestershire once held classical figurative sculptures of gods and goddesses, but they have long since been sold, lost or destroyed. Nine contemporary artists have been invited to make new sculptural works for this room taking these original sculptures as starting points. The results are as varied as they are stunning. Tom Freshwater, the Trust’s Contemporary Arts Programme Manager, will explore how working with artists at National Trust places always reveals the unexpected.
From ‘One and All’, which as seen three leading artists working across sound, poetry and art to mark the powerful emotional and personal links that we all have to our coastal landscapes, to the transformation of Studley Royal’s Banqueting House with the additional of a Gary McCann’s giant bird installation, seen above, to interactive sculpture Magister Dixit (‘the master has said’) exploring the history of performance, ritual and service at Tyntesfield, the National Trust’s contemporary arts programme ‘Trust New Art’ has been surprising, exciting and occasionally controversial.