It’s not just the majesty of the Palladian palace built by Britain’s first Prime Minister, Sir Robert Walpole. Not simply the scampering herds of white deer in the great park. Nor merely the glories of the William Kent decorated Stone Hall and Red Salon, the latter an exuberant testament to a time when a Prime Minister’s choice of wallpaper was less than headline news. This year, it’s the massive presence, in the grounds and in the house, of Tony Cragg’s subversive, playful, surprisingly sexy and elementally dangerous sculptures. This is the sixth exhibition at Houghton and follows on from Anish Kapoor and Damian Hurst.
Tony Cragg will be exhibiting many of his hall mark sculptures as well as a few surprises From the end of May until well into September.
In the Red Salon, there’s the electrifying spectacle of Pair, two shimmering stainless steel constructs that sit against the sumptuous splendour of the room. In the Secret Garden, its vast weight craned over the walls and into this intimate space, is a voluptuous new work, Masks. At one end of a long and beautiful vista, looking like a precipitous geological formation, is Stack, its threatening asymmetry playing against the harmony of the Palladian water tower that sits at the far end of the enchanting view. And here, in a quiet glade, is Versus, a 2100kg bronze that sits like an enormous shield in its quiet setting.
Tony Cragg at Houghton Hall in Norfolk, 19 May – 26 September (selected days)
All tickets must be pre-booked online at houghtonhall.com
Tickets on sale now; Exhibition tickets £18 per adult