Over the past three days, a journalist and a photographer from Marie Claire magazine have been at Attingham to hear about, and take pictures of, the House of Beasts exhibition. This exhibition features contemporary art which explores the history of the house. I like the idea of linking the old with the new, and how the art work reflects stories told in each room. ‘Herd’ by Susie MacMurray is one of my favourites. MacMurray amassed dozens of antlers from the estate and arranged them in the Inner Library, as if bursting out of the doorway.
Antlers are shed naturally, but also come from the regular culling of the deer. The art work links to the fact that the 8th Lord Berwick was extremely fond of the deer – so fond that he had to leave the estate every time there was a deer cull. The harsh reality is that part of managing a lovely herd of deer includes regular culling.
To go back to the glitz of a glossy magazine…word of mouth reached Marie Claire, who then decided to run a 7 page feature on the exhibition. The photographer and journalist were both from France, and it quickly became apparent that my school French was not up to scratch! The odd word I could pick out included ‘froid’…which, if you’ve ever been to Attingham in winter, you’d understand!
Resisting the urge to jump into the photos, I helped out where I could, moving chairs and opening shutters to let in more light. By the end of day three, all the pictures had been taken. Watch out for the article when it comes out in April/May time!