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Castles, Follies and Elephants

Claire Harper, James Perry and Oliver Perry, 2017

A series of sculptures reflecting on the influences that have shaped the landscape of the North Tyne Valley

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Castles, Follies and Elephants continues Kielder Art & Architecture's creative exploration of Kielder Water & Forest Park in a very entertaining way, cleverly presenting eight extremely diverse influences that have shaped the landscape of the North Tyne Valley as we know it today, from defence to infrastructure, power and leisure, reimagined as a collection of playful fragments of structures installed along a trail in the grounds of Kielder Castle.

Each individual sculpture responds to its selected site, but also to deliberately sits unnaturally within it. Each one interacts with visitors in different ways – simply framing a view, drawing attention to the landscape’s history, or highlighting the current forest management. Individual interpretations are numerous. Each installation is also named according to what it evokes, i.e. Embleton Tower; Wilton Centre; Kielder Pipeline; Plashetts Colliery etc.

This playful yet complex work also addresses the way history is often made up of improbably linked elements and invites us to consider how disparate narrative connections can be harnessed to tell the story of a single place.

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