Chatsworth House Stages Two Exciting Contemporary Art and Design Exhibitions

The historic stately home Chatsworth House in Derbyshire is staging two exciting new exhibitions this autumn. ‘Beyond Limits’ a large scale sculpture exhibition and ‘Modern Makers’, an exhibition of work by artists who either feature in the Devonshire’s collection of contemporary applied arts, or whose work, in material, technique, subject matter or function, corresponds with aspects of the historical collections. Both exhibitions are presented in association with Sotheby’s.

The annual event will feature a spectacular selection of more than 20 monumental sculptures from international artists. Dramatic works by Jaume Plensa, Manolo Valdés, Mario Merz, Juan Muñoz, Marc Quinn and a magnificent pavilion by Thomas Heatherwick.  Sotheby’s is honoured to present some of the finest contemporary sculpture in one of the world’s most historic garden settings. This year’s show includes a particularly strong contingent of home-grown artists including Bill Woodrow, Tony Cragg (top photo) and Allen Jones, who will be creating a specially commissioned sculpture for this latest edition of the show.

This year’s ‘Beyond Limits’ exhibits are notable for their exciting range of materials – from the traditional, such as bronze and stone, to fibre-glass, aluminium, steel and acrylic. The extraordinary diversity of these international artists’ works represents some of the most original and thrilling monumental sculpture being made today.Commenting on this year’s line-up for Beyond Limits, Alexander Platon, Sotheby’s Head of Private Sales, Europe said: “This is an exciting time for monumental sculpture. The market for these dramatic outdoor works of art is becoming increasingly global, with buyers from Asia, Russia and the Middle East now collecting in this sphere. There is no better setting in the world than the historic gardens of Chatsworth House, where, this year, we are delighted to showcase a stellar group of works by some of the world’s leading contemporary sculptors.”

For more than three centuries, Chatsworth House in Derbyshire has been home to the Dukes of Devonshire, whose legendary collection of paintings and decorative arts is one of the world’s greatest. This autumn, in Chatsworth’s galleries, Sotheby’s will host Modern Makers, a selling exhibition of contemporary applied art brought together by curator Sarah Griffin. Taking Chatsworth and the Devonshire Collection as a source of inspiration, some 16 leading international artists have created an outstanding selection of works including furniture, textiles, ceramics and metalwork, which create a unique dialogue with their historic surroundings. Highlights will include a spectacular ash bed by Joseph Walsh, Ptolemy Mann’s exquisite textile installation and a dramatic steel chandelier by Junko Mori. In its scope and interpretation, the exhibition is intended to challenge perceptions of conventional crafts practice.

Modern Makers’ curator Sarah Griffin commented: “Visits to the house with many of the makers has yielded new insights into the collecting achievements of the Devonshires and their multi-faceted interests and passions, and an unprecedented opportunity for innovation and inspiration amongst the artists. The work in the exhibition, in its seriousness, content, and skill in the making, can be claimed simultaneously by the fine art, design and craft worlds. These makers are masters of their chosen materials and techniques – which partly define their work, but equally bring content, depth of reference, well-thought out and considered design to each work.”

Some of the artists featured in Modern Makers include:

Joseph Walsh (b.1979) founded his studio and workshop in 1999 in Co. Cork, Ireland. He is a self- taught designer maker, realising one of a kind and limited edition pieces in wood. His works can be found in many important international museum and private collections including Chatsworth, the National Museum of Ireland, the Embassy of Japan, Ireland and Mint Museum of Craft + Design, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA. Joseph Walsh has created a dramatic curved bed in ash wood for the exhibition.

Junko Mori (b.1974) is a Japanese metalworker and graduate of Camberwell College of Arts in London, who creates hand-forged works which are both organic and minimalist. In 2004, the department store Peter Jones in Sloane Square, commissioned her to create a foyer sculpture entitled ‘Sprig’ for its newly refurbished interior. Her works are in the Collections

 Ptolemy Mann (b.1972) is a textile artist, who weaves colour-soaked, linear wall panels using the ikat technique (pictured above). Inspired by the colour theories of the Bauhaus and artists such as Anni Albers and Charles and Ray Eames, she also finds inspiration in photography and the landscape. Ptolemy has created textiles for London Transport, Christopher Farr, Cunard and Hilton Hotel Group. She is a regular exhibitor at the Chelsea Craft Fair, ORIGIN, 100% Design, SOFA New York and Chicago and is a selected maker on the Crafts Council register. Ptolemy has created a shimmering textile corridor at Chatsworth.

Felicity Aylieff (b.1954) is internationally renowned for her large scale ceramics. A graduate of the Royal College of Art, she was the first Ceramics and Glass student at the RCA to be awarded an MPhil research degree. Working from her studio in Bath for more than 3 decades, she has recently developed a collaboration with manufactories in Jingdezhen, China where she makes monumental pots. Her work is held in numerous international private and public collections including the V&A. Felicity’s two blue and white lidded jars, and two groups of five pots, will echo the collection of oriental porcelain in the Devonshire Collection.

Julian Stair (b.1955) is an English potter, who works in a range of materials, from fine glazed porcelain to rough engineering brick clays. His groups of ceramics vary in scale from cups and teapots to monumental jars over 6 feet tall and weighing half a ton. Julian has exhibited internationally over the last 30 years and has work in over 20 collections including the V&A, British Council, American Museum of Art & Design, Hong Kong Museum of Art and the Boymans Museum, Netherlands. Julian has created a ceramics installation inspired by the Chatsworth China Closet.

Max Lamb (b.1980), native of St. Austell in Cornwall and a graduate of the Royal College of Art, was named “Designer of the Future” at Design Miami/Basel in 2008. Lamb revels in experimenting with process and materials. He laboriously chisels, buries, grows and smelts materials into rugged and bold forms, casting in sand, cutting furniture from solid rock, hand-carving from polystyrene and casting in bronze. For Modern Makers Max is making furniture out of a felled yew taken from the grounds at Chatsworth.

Top Photo: Tony Cragg, Declination, 2005, bronze, 240 x 230 x 360 cm, unique Bottom Photo: Joseph Walsh, Enignum Canopy Bed, 2013, ash, white oil

Sotheby’s at Chatsworth: A Selling Exhibition 9th September – 27th October 2013

SOTHEBY’S PRESENTS “MODERN MAKERS”  18th September – 23rd December 2013

Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, DE45 1PP

Chatsworth House Stages Two Exciting Contemporary Art and Design Exhibitions

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