It was that time between Christmas and New Year when you are in limbo. I remembered there was an art exhibition on at Yorkshire Sculpture Park I had been meaning to see and it wasn’t weather dependant. The M1 behaved itself so I reached West Bretton before lunchtime. Leaflets were collected and I went to the cafe to plan my day whilst I could get a seat and food. Fuelled for the day I went and admired the Norman Ackroyd exhibition, it was inspiring and I will start creating again!
The sun had broken through the Yorkshire cloud and I was desperate for fresh air. I had picked the Sean Scully leaflet before brunch and was intrigued. It wasn’t someone I had never heard but apparently he’s been nominated for the Turner Prize. I therefore had no preconceptions. His first work I came across was Wall Dale Cubed, a huge piece constructed of Yorkshire stone (of course).
The early afternoon sun was showing off the beauty of the stone. This was the first of four outside sculptures, two more were on the way to his exhibition in Longside Gallery.
Dale Stone Stack was a great deal smaller but still tall. As I do I got muddy knees to get a photo to show its towering nature. In some ways it’s a more personable piece.
Outside Longside Gallery was Moor Shadow Stack, this time a metal tower that reflected in the gallery window. The metal showed all the variations the stone did.
The structures made more sense when I saw the inside exhibition with its paintings, stacks and ‘inspiration’ area.
Sean Scully’s paintings are stripes of colour often of hues you find in the surrounding landscape in layers which translates into the 3D work. The ‘coins’ reminds him of his own childhood of money being stacked on the kitchen table. I love the different materials he uses and their textures, it’s made me look at my own photos and the layers of sky, land and water within them.
Inspiration for sculpture and art
In the side area was a display of other artwork and photographs. I’m reassured that other people find fascination in the pattern and workmanship of dry stone walls. Friends and family know I point out the strangest things but they go along with me. I also had to smile at a model made by a visitor with wooden blocks. Inspiration areas do work for both children and adults!!
To finish off my wanderings for the day I went to see the final outside piece. By now it was twilight, the sun had set over the lake and a peaceful air was over the park. This is one of the advantages of an early sunset, you get to spend time in the park at twilight before it shuts. The last sculpture was Crate of Air, a Corten Steel structure which framed another feature of the park – sheep. All the sculptures were fitting and inspiring in their environment and I had a most enjoyable day discovering another artist. The larger two sculptures are going to remain for a while after the exhibition. Yorkshire Sculpture Park always has something to enjoy, its variety is its key.