Over the last couple of weekends, I have indulged in visits to artist’s homes in the Chichester area. Not only was it a pleasurable experience to see so much artistic talent but also to visit some beautiful homes, gardens and work spaces.
One which sticks in my mind was the studio at Said House in Fishbourne.
The ‘pavilion’ in the garden was designed by architects, Peter Melvin and Jane Newman and was a beautiful space to behold; looking over the neighbouring countryside and with a lofty, inspiring air to it.
Who couldn’t fail to be creative in a space like that?
Equally impressive in a rural setting but quite different were the studios of at Graingers, West Ashling which belong to the artist Neil Lawson Baker. We thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the painting of a London Cow. This project provided the visitors with a chance to add to the art installation by painting hearts on a life-size plastic cow! We will now wait and see where the beautifully adorned creature will end up for us all to admire.
When visiting these creative individuals there was a real sense of being inspired by their surroundings, their experiences and ultimately the medium they were using.
With some of the sculptural pieces and in particular those that were installed within a garden setting, there was a real harmony between the materials and the planting. One particular example were the sculptures of Lou Johns, which are beautiful figurative pieces and set amongst a woodland style garden. You are lead around the garden and ‘discover’ a variety of pieces, of different scales and proportions, all set off brilliantly by the foliage.
Designing and being creative is a wonderful gift and being able to create a complete ‘work of art’ using buildings, their gardens and art work is a true joy to behold.
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