Artistically inspired - international art collection announced for Festival 2012

Possibly by Carol Peace

The 78th Glyndebourne Festival presents 12 inspirational artists exhibiting more than 100 pieces of art and sculpture in the annual art collection that supports Glyndebourne’s Festival. Visual arts have long been integral to Glyndebourne and today, this area of work enhances our cultural output and compliments the annual Festival presenting a series of artistic and sculptural debuts that harmoniously synchronise with the 2012 Festival repertoire.

With internationally-renowned artists Deborah Bell, John Caple and John Stezaker exhibiting alongside established and emerging British artists such as Lachlan Goudie, Sarah Young and Julika de Fouw, the 2012 art collection is an ideal opportunity for audiences to see new work by leading international artists and uncover many burgeoning artists creating names for themselves in the British art world.

Much of the art on display reflects the 2012 Festival repertoire and showcases some of the most exciting, contemporary and traditional artists seen yet at Glyndebourne. Supporting the long-held Glyndebourne Festival tradition of operatic debuts, the 2012 art collection further reflects this by hosting artists who have not previously shown collections at Glyndebourne.

Hosted in the famed gardens, in the Stalls Gallery and in the new exhibition space in Mildmay Restaurant the art on display is available to buy online as well as on site.  Over the 100 days of the Festival, Glyndebourne’s Artist-in-Residence Julian Sutherland-Beatson returns to Glyndebourne (following a successful season in 2011 as artist-in-residence) to create a new series of behind the scenes paintings. The art presented for the 2012 season is the largest collection Glyndebourne has hosted; it presents a dynamic series of visual art and showcases a diverse and vibrant programme of multimedia work, traditional paintings and modern sculpture.

Leading the 2012 collection is renowned South African artist and Sculptor Deborah Bell, who unveils two new works, one of which was created specifically for the 2012 Festival.  Also showing in the grounds is work from Carol Peace and Lucy Unwin. Acclaimed artist John Caple presents work in Mildmay Restaurant and in the Stalls Gallery artists new to Glyndebourne Sarah Young and Lachlan Goudie show with Julika de Fouw, Simon Dorrell, Tuema Pattie and Siân Wilkins.

The 78th Glyndebourne Festival presents another artistic first with renowned collagist artist John Stezaker. John is the first artist to take a photographic approach to the cover design of the Glyndebourne programme book and he follows in the footsteps of many great artists including Anish Kapoor, David Hockney and Grayson Perry. The annual art collection presented throughout the summer is a pleasure that many audience members look forward to, and the pieces presented in the 2012 exhibitions are a breath-taking example of art at its best.

Glyndebourne’s Archive Gallery present two further exhibitions in the 2012 season that explore the symbiotic history of art and nature, highlighting the inspirational setting that Glyndebourne offers artists; the exhibitions are free to visit as part of the 2012 Festival experience: 

Celebration of Art and Nature - 20 May-24 June 2012

In 1983 Mary Christie wrote: ‘opera is of course the most important part - and the focal point - of the operation, but it is the gardens which provide the context, a context which is distinctive from that of any other opera house.’ Glyndebourne’s setting has proved influential over the years, whether as a rehearsal space, a foyer, or as an inspiration for so much creativity. The first of Glyndebourne’s summer exhibitions examines the multiple roles that the gardens and surroundings at Glyndebourne have played.

Eight Decades of Le nozze di Figaro - 26 June-26 August 2012

Mozart’s Figaro holds a special place in Glyndebourne’s heart and history. From 1934’s inaugural performance with Audrey Mildmay as Susanna, to the opening of the new theatre and beyond, this exhibition explores the history and importance of this seminal work. 

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