Friday 29 Mar 2013 - Sunday 30 Jun 2013
In the Terrace Gallery 11.00am - 4.00pm & State Rooms 12.00pm - 4.00pm
In her poem, Two Campers in Cloud Country (1960), Sylvia Plath notes the indifference of the natural world ‘…where trees and clouds… pay no notice’. It is this autonomy which has also inspired generations of artists to make observations from nature to lead them to formal or symbolic abstraction.
The great 18th century watercolourist John Sell Cotman uses pencil to capture the dynamism of light falling on trees by a riverbank; while the fleeting volumes of cumulous clouds are trapped by John Constable in his intense oil studies. 20th century Modernist, Henry Moore uses the branches of a tree to make vein like traceries of lines; while Italian sculptor Giuseppe Penone uses drawing to resurrect the tree that has been subsumed in a domestic plank of wood. Rachel Whiteread takes a symbol of the Arts & Crafts movement, the Tree of Life, and translates it into a contemporary icon.
Whether it is atmospheric phenomena, the linear or textural qualities of the botanical world or their political and metaphoric potential, artists’ studies from nature offer a breathtaking range of abstractions. These artists have made studies of plants and of land, sea or skyscapes. They translate what they have seen or felt, into a staggering array of different artistic strategies.
Curated by Iwona Blazwick and Diane Howse the exhibition features some 60 works on paper which cross generations and continents.
Writer, curator and broadcaster Iwona Blazwick has been Director of the Whitechapel Gallery in London since 2001. Previously she was Director of Exhibitions at the ICA, a Commissioning Editor at Phaidon Press and Head of Exhibitions and Displays at Tate Modern where she developed elements of the display strategy prior to its opening.
The exhibition space has been decorated with the kind support of Farrow & Ball, as part of our on-going partnership in the House here at Harewood.
The colour used is: All White 2005
Entrance to this event is included with a day ticket
Free to Harewood Cardholders
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