Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Visitors offered a 'Fresh Take' on England’s greatest Elizabethan house through contemporary art

Burghley House

Visitors to Lincolnshire’s Burghley House are being offered a fresh new take on England’s greatest Elizabethan house through contemporary pieces ranging from resin art to sugar craft. 

More than four centuries of history and heritage at Burghley, on the edge of the Georgian stone town of Stamford, has provided the inspiration for the Fresh Take exhibition of contemporary artwork launching this month.

The project has offered six local artists the opportunity to explore Burghley’s heritage and produce new work, bringing together historic and current contexts as a complement to the House’s own exceptional collections.

The new artworks will be exhibited in Burghley's Staterooms from 9 September to 3rd November 2013 while events, including Artists’ Talks on 26th September and workshops on 26th October and 2nd November, will also be staged during the exhibition.

Artists Anita Bruce, Jason Duckmanton, Lindsey Holmes, Kathryn Parsons, Stuart Payn and Sue Shields have created some unusual pieces using the House and its history as their inspiration.

Among them are resin encased copper jelly and aspic mould motifs in the Old Kitchen, representing some of the treasures collected by the fifth Lord Burghley, while the Roman Staircase becomes home to two pairs of shoes made from sugar modelling pastes, envisaged for two of the House’s former residents, including the young daughter of William Cecil.

A Fresh Take of the Billiard Room comes courtesy of a display based upon the popular tricorn hat of the time which reflects the animal nicknames of the members of the Honourable Order of Little Bedlam that met there in the 17th Century.

The long standing relationship of Burghley with travel and tourism is also explored in the Pagoda Room with a display of hand cut paper ribbon maps reflecting the importance William Cecil placed on map content featuring only the details deemed most significant.

Supported by public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England as well as Creative Peterborough, Fresh Take launched its search for local artists in January this year.

Now the six selected artists, who took up their residency within Burghley House, to create their artworks, are to unveil their contemporary take on Burghley’s history and heritage to the public.

For more details about the exhibition, events and Burghley House, visit

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