7 November – 22 December 2013
Opening times: Thur-Fri, 10.30am-5pm, Sat-Sun, 12-5pm (last admission 4.30pm)
entry to the house to view the exhibition is free
Transition Gallery presents Wintergarden at Sutton House in Hackney. Expanding the layers of history suggested by this Tudor property, and bringing into focus the courtyard garden, Wintergarden also connects with Hackney’s historical nursery, Loddiges, which was once situated nearby on Mare Street.
The exhibition takes its cue from the public pleasure palaces of the mid-19th Century where exotic, tropical flora and fauna were displayed in artificial conditions provided by elaborate glasshouses alongside other theatrical entertainments for the masses. The most famous nursery garden in Europe stood near Mare Street, close to today’s Town Hall. At Loddiges, tropical plants grew for the first time outside their native rainforest. 'I fancied myself in the Brazils' wrote a visitor, in wonderment at the artificial tropical rainstorm inside the largest hothouse in the world.
Jo Wilmot, Neon Lights, 2013, oil and acrylic on canvas,120x167cm
Focussing on contemporary artificiality and fake environments, the artists in Wintergarden embrace the notion of a self-conscious spectacle in the remaking of nature. This excessive strategy acknowledges and exposes our ever-increasing desire for an elusive X-factor that is still able to engage not only our real curiosity, but also often our contempt.
Winter Garden is the first in a series of new projects initiated by Sam Knowles with the National Trust and local not-for-profit organisations.
Directions to Sutton House
Annabel Dover, Deliquium, 2013, cyanotype prints, 50x35cm each - in the Georgian Parlour