Barbara Hepworth-inspired garden for Tate Britain

A garden installation inspired by a Barbara Hepworth textile is to be part of a Tate Britain exhibition this year.

The installation, by designers Rosie Irving and Antonia Young, makes its first appearance at Chelsea Fringe (Vauxhall Pocket Park Piazza next to Hugo Bugg’s relocated 2014 Chelsea Garden) from 22 May to 6 June with the title ‘Hortus non Conclusus’ planted up with mainly whites and silvers.   

It then changes name to ‘The Summer Garden’ and plants to bright zingy coloured tones and moves to Tate Britain’s café lawn, opening to the public from 11 June until 2 September

The garden will then move permanently back to Vauxhall Pocket Park Piazza where it becomes a community garden maintained by social enterprise charity ‘Streetscape’.

Irving is a horticultural researcher for TV gardening programmes and a trained garden designer and came up with the idea in 2014 when visiting London Fashion & Textile Museum’s exhibition ‘Artists’ Textiles’.

She said: "All around me were beautiful bright fabrics designed by Picasso, Warhol and Rhodes.  In the corner, in stark contrast to the vibrant prints, was a small, monochromatic design that stopped me in my tracks. I was enthralled by the strong, geometric lines; the confidence and skill of the hand that had designed it.

"To me it was a brilliant example of less is more, where stark simplicity makes it impossible to hide bad design. It struck me that this could make a garden, with the individual elements transformed into garden planters and seating areas. I teamed up with a fellow garden design pal, Antonia Young, and together we came up with the design." 

"I am very interested in the concept of combining art with horticulture and excited that the Garden Installation will be located in these two places as they form part of the ‘Missing Link’ green mile based on New York’s High Line and which now seems to be linking horticulture with its nearby emerging Art Gallery District - the new Damien Hirst Art Gallery is approx. 750 yards up from the Vauxhall location."

Haddonstone have agreed to make and supply a prototype of the black and white elements from cast limestone, and also plan to market those elements in modular form as part of their new St Ives range.

Tate Britain said: "‘The garden takes its inspiration from the textile designs of Barbara Hepworth – the Yorkshire born sculptor, and one of Britain’s greatest artists, who died 40 years ago, in 1975.  It coincides with the first London Museum retrospective of Hepworth’s work for five decades, opening at Tate Britain on 24 June 2015.  The exhibition will highlight the different contexts and spaces in which Hepworth presented her work, from the studio to the landscape."


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