COLUMN: Behind the Scenes...at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Ed Kluz, Fishers Hall, Hackfall, Masham, North Yorkshire, 2017. Courtesy the artist and YSP.

I’ve been working with artist Ed Kluz on his forthcoming exhibition since early 2016, and Sheer Folly – Fanciful Buildings of Britain opens today.

Seeing the finished exhibition after many months of planning and hard work is always incredibly rewarding and Ed’s exhibition definitely doesn’t disappoint!
It’s my job to pull together the selling shows at YSP. These exhibitions feature the work of some of the UK’s most talented artists and illustrators, including Rob Ryan, Mark Hearld and most recently Alice Pattullo.

All the artworks included are for sale, which gives our visitors a chance to buy affordable art and provides vital support to the Park which is a charity.

Sheer Folly – Fanciful Buildings of Britain celebrates the many eccentric, uncanny and overlooked follies, temples and towers that dot the British landscape.

Featuring egg tempera paintings, mixed media collages, scraper boards and prints, the exhibition takes inspiration from fantastical, fanciful and often hidden or forgotten buildings across the UK, including the artist’s home county of North Yorkshire and YSP’s 500-acre, 18th-century parkland.

The Bretton Estate was home to a number of follies during its time as a wealthy family estate.

Many of these, including the shell grotto, Greek temple and Lady Eglinton’s well can still be seen at the Park.

However, when we were looking for inspiration for Ed’s exclusive YSP print, Bretton Estate’s lost Belle Vista tower was an enticing prospect. 
Belle Vista was once an entrance lodge to the estate, initially designed by architect John Carr as a four-storey octagonal tower. Thought to have stood on the northern edge of the estate, it was constructed in around 1770 as a much less elaborate two-storey building. 
We searched through our archives and found an original architect’s drawing and photographic record of Belle Vista, which Ed has worked from in order to produce his limited-edition screen print. 
He chose to depict the gothic folly as it was originally imagined by Carr rather than as the constructed reality shown in photographs.
Other works in the show range from the extravagant Grade I-listed Arno’s Castle in Bristol to the humble Fisher’s Hall folly in Masham. 
Large original collages of Chatsworth House in Derbyshire and Castle Howard, North Yorkshire also feature.

Belle Vista, along with all works in the exhibition, are available to buy in store at YSP Shop and online at ysp.org.uk/shop. 
There’s also a fantastic opportunity to book onto a two-day Paper Collage Workshop, led by Ed, on 24 and 25 February 2018, or to hear the artist in conversation on 10 February 2018. 
It’s the perfect excuse to treat yourself to an early Christmas present!

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