Thursday, 24 May 2012

Blenheim Palace celebrating the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad

Hundreds of Ceramic Delphiniums on display at Blenheim Palace celebrating the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad

Scores of ceramic flowers are set to bloom at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire to celebrate the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad this summer. Around 200 ceramic delphiniums are set to go on display at the entrance to the Formal Gardens as part of a national installation named ‘The English Flower Garden’.
Ceramic Flowers at Blenheim Palace

During 2012, fine ceramic artist Paul Cummins is holding a series of exhibitions at specially selected venues across the UK chosen for their historical and social significance. Cummins has been commissioned to create 12,000 ceramic flowers for display around the country.
Cummins makes each delicate flower by hand with some standing up to six feet tall, taking years to complete. Delphiniums were chosen to feature at Blenheim Palace because they are a favourite of The11th Duke of Marlborough.

In addition to Blenheim Palace, there are five other prestigious locations in England between May and September, including 1,000 roses and 500 tulips that will go on show at The Houses of Parliament. Each bloom will be unique but will form part of the larger flower installation. The flowers are hand-thrown on a potter’s wheel featuring a Majolica glaze and attached to galvanised steel rods, ranging from 50 - 70cm in height, allowing the flowers to move in the breeze.
The work was commissioned as part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad, which aims to celebrate the arts in conjunction with the main sporting events at the London Olympics. None of the flowers are native to the UK, but aim to represent bringing together people from all over the world.

Ruth Mackenzie, Cultural Olympiad, Director, said: ‘This commission is about world-class artists creating brilliant work which will change perceptions of the work of disabled and deaf artists. Congratulations to the commissioned artists and we look forward to seeing how their work develops.’

The English Flower Garden has been commissioned by the Unlimited programme, part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

Unlimited encourages collaborations and partnerships between disability arts organisations, disabled and deaf artists, producers and mainstream organisations to celebrate the inspiration of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and to create original and exciting works. Twenty-nine Unlimited Commissions have been awarded.

The Blenheim Palace flowers will be on show from 1st June to 17th September.

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