Thursday, September 05, 2013

A visit to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park

We'd wanted to visit the Yorkshire Sculpture Park for ages and last Tuesday we finally got there.  We'd booked a hotel not too far away but closer to the places we visited the next day (see my last post) so on Tuesday morning we set off driving through Leek, Buxton and Glossop, stopping at Holmfirth for a coffee break and then driving what seemed like a short distance to the park.  

The first sculptures we saw were the outdoor exhibits belonging to a wonderful exhibition called 'Fabric-Ation' by the British-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare MBE.  I was entranced by these and also the interior exhibits. I was impressed by their colours and textures, their literary and historic references,  in fact by their sheer exuberance.

The most vivid and inspiring work for me was the film 'Un Ballo in Maschere (A Masked Ball)'.  The film depicts, in dance, the assassination of King Gustav III of Sweden.  The King was targeted because of his support for the return of the monarchy in France during the years of the revolution and also for the fact that he tried to style his own court on that of a pre-revolution French one.  The King was shot in the back and died thirteen days later.

Whilst I was watching the film I was reminded of 'Les Liaisons Dangereuses' by Pierre Choderos de Laclos.  I've found a clip of the Masked Ball on You Tube (above)

After the film it was time to go out into the bright sunshine and look at the outdoor sculptures.  We must have spent about three hours just wandering around, sometimes following the map and sometimes following our own noses.  We stopped for a picnic lunch halfway round.  I'm sure we missed lots of things but then that is a good excuse to return one day.  Below are some of the photos I took.  I took loads but a lot were affected by the very bright sunshine so these are some of the better ones.

 Little Girl - Lynn Chadwick

 Rocking Horse - Marcia Farquhar

 Octopus - Marialuisa Tadei

 Giro - Eduardo Paolozzi

 Manus and the Running Dogs - Sophie Ryder

 Seated Figures - Magdalena Abakanowicz

 Sitting - Sophie Ryder

Everything is Connected - Peter Liversidge

 One and Other - Antony Gormley

 Promenade - Anthony Caro
Deer Shelter Skyspace - James Turrell (interior)

Ha Ha Bridge - Brian Fell

Personnage - Joan Miro

Draped Seated Woman - Henry Moore

Propagator - Alec Finlay

Across the other side of the lake and over the Cascade bridge was a 'no dogs' area.  The reason for this was the grazing Highland Cattle.  We wondered if we would see the cattle as we walked to the Dam Head Bridge - we did and I have to say I've never been so close to un-fettered Highland cattle before.

As well as the sculptures the park itself has many interesting buildings, plants and views as far as the eye can see.  It is the most wonderful space.

All too soon it seemed that it was time to leave and drive towards Halifax to find our hotel. 


  1. What fun!
    Love the highland cattle too. I groomed one once. They are pussy cats. Until you find a tangle with the comb..

    1. As long as they don't sit on your lap!:)

  2. I think I like the running dogs sculptures and the ha ha bridge most of all. What a fascinating place! I adore your picture of the tree at the bottom of the post. Great effect! x

    1. I loved the bridge too. The trees in the park were wonderful:)

  3. It's a couple of years since we went to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and we enjoyed the sculptures in that setting of vast parkland with mature trees. A place to return to.

    1. It is a wonderful place. I hope we will go back one day:)

  4. Some good sculptures there Rosie. The rocking horse puts me in mind of that out of Troy. Beautiful scenery too.
    Patricia x

    1. Ah, yes! It was a place of meeting - we heard several people say 'meet you at the rocking horse' :)

  5. Wow! Some great sculptures there. Looks a great place to visit. Mx

    1. It is a super place if ever you get the chance to visit:)

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