New work by Simon Hitchens installed for Cheeseburn Sculpture Gardens open weekends

Cheeseburn welcomes art lovers back to its Sculpture Gardens  for the continuation of its open weekends with a new installation by artist Simon Hitchens.

Friday, 21st June 2019, 11:59 am
New works by Simon Hitchens has been installed
New works by Simon Hitchens has been installed

Simon describes himself as a sculptor whose practice is multi-disciplinary; he believes that rock is the material and conceptual backbone of his work. Simon uses drawing techniques to work out and clarify his concepts before committing to his large sculpture works.

Over the next two of Cheeseburn’s open weekends, Simon will be showing drawings from his collection, Thinking Beyond Rock.

The illustrations have been created by tracing the shadows of a rock over the course of an entire day.

"The natural world is an endless source of inspiration to me, and a direct tool I use to create my work," he said.

For example, the current body of work I am pursuing requires sunlight as the source for image making, drawing shadows cast by a rock between sunrise and sunset. The resultant drawings are unique in time and space to a given location on the planet, recording the relentless rotation of the earth beneath our feet.”

The drawings from Simon’s Thinking Beyond Rock collection will be available to purchase at Cheeseburn over the open weekends.

Also included in the installation is Genesis, a looped film which features a benign boulder sat in an arcane landscape which slowly begins to take on human qualities; listen carefully and visitors will hear slow, deep breaths. The film encourages its viewers to take time to immerse themselves within the landscape, as they may notice intimate physical changes within the rock.

Simon was chosen as the winning artist for the Elizabeth Landmark project. The project team is seeking planning permission from Northumberland County Council to erect a 55-metre-high monument to Queen Elizabeth II and the Commonwealth on the Ray Estate.

As part of his installation at Cheeseburn, Simon has included a maquette of his winning landmark design, Ascendant.

“I hope the exhibition gives a great insight into Simon’s fascination with stone and the sun and shows the link between his studio practice and his ambitious Elizabeth Landmark proposal,” says Matthew Jarratt, curator at Cheeseburn.

Also available to enjoy on the upcoming open weekends will be dance performances from North East dancer Lizzie J Klotz.

Lizzie returns to Cheeseburn after performing at last year's open weekends with artist Joseph Hillier on his exhibition entitled ‘Pause/Play’, which looked at the art of movement. Lizzie also performed her original work Fawn at Cheeseburn last year, which looked at the act of pleasing as an instinctive response to fear, threat and failure.

Performing across Cheeseburn’s ten acres of lands, Lizzie J Klotz’s dance performance will interact with the world class sculpture found at the sculpture park.

Exclusive to the July open weekends, visitors can enjoy special performances of Stabat Mater. Led by Bennett Hogg, composed by Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, performed by the William Shield Chamber and directed by John Traherne. Julie Gill and Rachel Rew of the Fenham Ensemble will perform as soprano and mezzo, respectively.

The open weekends are:

Saturday June 29 and Sunday June 30

Saturday July 6 and Sunday July 7

Saturday July 24, Sunday July 25 and Monday July 26

Saturday August 31 and Sunday September 1

There is a recommended donation of £5 per adult upon entry. Regrettably Cheeseburn cannot accommodate dogs due to active farmland.