Figuratively speaking


EXG AUGUST 15 ART LIFE - Credit: Archant

Throughout August, Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum near Coggeshall will host its first sculpture exhibition in its beautiful grounds for visitors to enjoy. Holly Eells finds out more

A STUNNING exhibition of more than 230 pieces from over 30 national and international sculptors is to be displayed throughout the inspirational Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum in Coggeshall this month.

This is the first exhibition of this type to be held within this historic 200-acre landscape. From August 1 to 30, visitors will be given the opportunity to discover artwork sited throughout the gardens and arboretum and take a wander around the perfect setting, which will complement the remarkable exhibition with selected sculptures for homes and gardens.

There will be works of a huge variety in stone, marble, all metals, glass, water, wire, wood, bronze and willow including both kinetic works and installations which will all be available for purchase. Jennie McCall, a ceramic figurative artist from Loughborough, has been a practicing artist for more than 30 years, but she was particularly keen to be involved in this special exhibition. Jennie says: ‘I became involved with Marks Hall because I have been exhibiting at several beautiful venues like this one over the past few years and I have found them to be good sites for my work. I will be exhibiting one of my stoneware sculptures in this exhibition, which has been influenced by classical sculpture and is made by using stoneware clay with porcelain inlay.’

Jennie continues: ‘Marks Hall has beautiful gardens which are perfect for outdoor sculptures like mine. I am looking forward to viewing my work alongside other sculptors in the lovely natural setting of Marks Hall.’

This exceptional arboretum with an enviable collection of mature trees, woodland and leafy paths, provides a unique setting for this first-time exhibition and offers a new way to view and experience the landscape. Opened to the general public every day apart from Mondays, visitors can explore the formal two-acre garden, ornamental lakeside areas, the spectacular Southern Hemisphere Gondwanaland setting and much more.

Sculpture at Marks Hall, is co-curated by David Waghorne who is very experienced in this type of specific event. He has previously worked with the National Trust at Coughton Court Warwickshire as well as Greyfriars House and Garden in Worcester, plus privately-owned properties such as Doddington Hall in Lincolnshire.

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Sarah Edwards, marketing consultant at Marks Hall, shares why the public should visit the exhibition this summer. Sarah says: ‘We intend that this exhibition will present the gardens and arboretum in a new light for our visitors, as well as drawing in new audiences from across the region. We are not asking visitors to pay any additional charge for the exhibition and we have secured some sponsors for the event to facilitate the installation of the pieces. The main sponsor for the exhibition is Tiptree Jams and Marks Hall is hugely grateful for their support, as well as that of all our sponsors. All pieces in the exhibition will be offered for sale too.’

Sarah continues: ‘This has prompted the team at Marks Hall to promote a Summer of Art with children in mind. There will be a trail for children to follow which will explore the sculpture exhibition and a variety of resources on hand to create their own nature-inspired art.’