The Grand Tour – a cultural journey across Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire – will be taking place this March – June 2018, at four of the UK’s most distinguished arts institutions – Nottingham Contemporary, Chatsworth, The Harley Gallery Welbeck and Derby Museums.
This series of landmark exhibitions includes major shows by photomontage artist, Linder Sterling, at Nottingham Contemporary and Chatsworth, a delicate range of lithophanes by Clare Twomey at The Harley Gallery, and a compelling show celebrating ‘The Art of Industry’ at Derby Museums. A communal thread is found in the four exhibitions in the celebration of both the artistic process and the impact of industrial creation.
Nottingham Contemporary – House of Fame
The House of Fame at Nottingham Contemporary (24 March – 24 June 2018) is an ambitious exhibition convened by Linder, informed by her time at Chatsworth. At the heart of the presentation will be a retrospective of Linder’s work, spanning more than 40 years of photomontage, graphics, costume and performance. The retrospective is accompanied by a constellation of Linder’s artistic influences, from the worlds of art and architecture, fashion and theatre, music and design. Stretching from the early 17th century to today, The House of Fame will host some 150 works – drawings, sculptures, furniture, jewellery, photographs, banners – by dozens of artists selected by Linder.
Presenting the home as a place of performance, The House of Fame will run across all 800 square metres of gallery at Nottingham Contemporary, and will be divided into four themed sections: The House of the Future will investigate past imaginings of the future, with Alison and Peter Smithson’s ‘House of the Future’ as the starting point; The House of Rest – inspired by melancholy, mourning and memory – will feature works by contemporary artists such as Collier Schorr, Diane Simpsonand Mike Kelley alongside curiosities from Chatsworth; The House of Unrest is a space of spiritualism and mediums, surrealism and political agitation; and, finally, The Abode of Sound, about journeys in time and space, will be centred around Swedish artist Moki Cherry’s 12 immense tapestries, that will be shown for the first time in the UK.
Director of Nottingham Contemporary, Sam Thorne says:
“We are delighted to be leading the third season of The Grand Tour, working in collaboration with exciting cultural venues across the region. Linder’s exhibition at Nottingham Contemporary will be a collage of old and new, bringing an artist’s eye view onto Chatsworth’s collection, architecture, history and landscape. We hope to inspire new audiences for contemporary art from across the country and beyond.”
Chatsworth – Linder’s artist residency
This Grand Tour, British artist Linder Sterling – best known for her photomontages and influential role in punk/post-punk aesthetics – has become the first-ever artist resident at Chatsworth. Linder draws inspiration from the house itself and its exceptional surroundings, using Chatsworth as a kind of ‘sensorium’. Linder has immersed herself in the life of the stately home and its 500-year history, producing a series of works to be experienced through a variety of senses; creating incense from the aromatic plants on the estate, recording oral stories, and using the everyday sounds of the house for new musical compositions alongside new photomontages. A series of interventions created from her residency will be displayed at Chatsworth between 24 March – 21 October, as part of The Grand Tour programme.
The interventions will be staged in four different spaces: the Painted Hall will host a soundscape of bells played out in churches bordering the Chatsworth estate, alongside a scent installation made from plants and woods sourced from the grounds, which will recreate the incense used in ancient Rome, to capture some of the atmosphere seen in the “Scenes from the life of Julius Caesar” paintings adorning the Hall’s walls and ceiling; the State Bedchamber will feature a second scent installation, playing on the fragrance in the space and interacting with low light levels on the many paintings of women; the Old Master Drawings Lobby will showcase an installation of Linder’s photomontages; and finally, the Vestibule and Sculpture Gallery will display a sound installation of female voices to counterpoint the male voices of Chatsworth.
Linder says: “During my time at Chatsworth, I’ve become adept at time travel, studying various treasures from the collection in order to steer my course through centuries past. Time here folds in upon itself, it’s a very heady sensation, one that’s hard to resist. The new works that I’m making in situ will mirror this and all of the above.”
The Duke of Devonshire says: “Chatsworth is pleased and proud to welcome the artist and musician Linder Sterling as our very first Artist in Residence. We are tremendously excited to invite Linder to interpret Chatsworth through her own particular lens as she seeks to create new ways to communicate and transport experience of her encounters beyond Chatsworth. Linder intends to immerse herself in Chatsworth’s landscape and history, exploring themes of time and the senses to inform future work. Linder has worked with found photographic images for over four decades, often combining these with performance art, dance and sound.”
The Harley Gallery – Half in Shadow: Half in Light
In Harley Gallery’s exhibition, Half in Shadow: Half in Light (24 March 2018 – 30 June 2018), British artist Clare Twomey explores life on the historic Welbeck Estate through a series of lithophanes. Twomey reinvents the traditional technique of the lithophane through a series of portraits of people who live and work on the Welbeck Estate, representing the contemporary life on the grounds. The artist will shed light on the repurposed buildings on the estate such as the Poultry House, the Dairy and the Brewery, depicting people in their working environment and allowing new stories to be told.
Clare Twomey says: “To work with the history of Welbeck and to acknowledge how Welbeck now faces its future is a story of place that is concerned about people and purpose and the holding of its community.”
Lisa Gee, Director of The Harley Gallery and Foundation says: “It’s incredibly exciting to be working with such an acclaimed artist as Clare Twomey, just months after her exhibition as lead artist at the Tate’s Exchange space opened. From that show, in a gallery at the very forefront of cutting edge contemporary art, Clare has now shifted her gaze to Welbeck, a historic country estate which has been home to the Dukes of Portland and their families since 1607. She has been investigating the current working life of the estate, and how this modern story is influenced by the glow of the past. It’s been fascinating to watch her poetic interpretation of this discourse emerge.”
Derby Museum and Art Gallery – The Art of Industry
Derby Museum and Art Gallery’s exhibition The Art of Industry: From Joseph Wright to the 21st Century (24 March – 17 June 2018) will look back at the region’s industrial history and manufacturing landscape through both historic artefacts and contemporary artistic interpretation.
The display will be organised in three different sections: Industrial Landscapes will showcase the transformation of the industrial landscape from Romantic glorified scenes (1800-1850) to the Victorian portrayal of a place of hardship (1830-1900) and will include some of L. S. Lowry’s most prominent paintings; People at Work – the Factory Floor will feature major loans from the Tate including a lithograph from Christopher R. W. Nevinson as well as photographs from Maurice Broomfield among others; finally, Workshop will display objects from Derbyshire’s rich industrial past – tools, machines, as well as examples of their manufacturing products, and marketing and graphic materials which we associate with them.
The Art of Industry will show the evolving relationship that artists have had with the manufacturing heritage that helps define the Midlands as a hub of industry in the UK.
Jonathan Wallis, Head of Museums, Derby Museums says: “The Art of Industry will illustrate the changing perceptions of Britain as an industrial powerhouse, using a selection of sculpture, drawing and fine art. As well as drawing from our own rich collection, loans from Tate and museums across the country, will supplement the story telling. We’re thrilled to be showing Joseph Wright’s An Iron Forge, a stimulating and gritty depiction of 18th century industrial Britain. The work on display will illustrate the industrial history seen in art; from scenes of industrial buildings seen as places of wonder set in sublime landscapes, to when they become ‘dark satanic mills’ and technological power houses reaping havoc on the natural world.”