Echoing the 2010 Garden Festival on the theme of “body and soul”, the French artists, Anne and Patrick Poirier, are offering eight poetic installations that link nature and memory closely together. Using a very wide variety of materials and media, such as marble and granite, light and sound, they will be presenting their work in the Stables, as well as in the Château itself and the Grounds of the Domain. The Stables Riding Ring will thus be transformed into an elegant Volière (Aviary), a small chapel Capella dans la clairière (Capella in the Clearing) will come to life in one of the copses in the Grounds and a 3-tonne monumental eye made of marble, L'Œil de l'oubli (The Eye of Forgetfulness), will be placed at the bot-tom of a natural ice-house, a cave open to the skies in the Valley of Mist. Five more works are being created in the Domain’s artistic spaces that are both unexpected and really refined.
Trees, symbols of fertility and life that are often under threat, will also be at the heart of the Domain’s 2010 programming with the installations of Bob Verschueren, Côme Mosta Heirt, Benoît Mangin and Marion Laval-Jeantet.
Three spectacular plant installations by the Belgian artist, Bob Verschueren, Réflexions (Reflections), Le règne vegetal (The Plant Kingdom) and Face à (Opposite To) will be presented in the Farm: trees laid one on top of the other in an amazing way in the footbath, a giant throne looking the visitor up and down in the Bee Barn, a meditation on man’s destructive pas-sion in the Hayloft Gallery.
As for the visual artist, Côme Mosta Heirt, he will fill the Domain’s Greenhouse with strange, subtly painted wooden branches that spill out right into the Farmyard, where they transform into bronze posts, thus forming an original Mise en serre (Greenhouse Scene).
Still on the theme of trees, the duo Benoît Mangin and Marion Laval-Jeantet, author of many poetic works with a strong environmental link, will offer Unrooted Trees under the Stable Canopy, a tree engraved with strange words and decorated with bicycle wheels, recreated out of branches from Cameroon that were left behind by forestry workers.
At the same time, two young artists, playing with nature, will take the visitor off into their own universe that is both fanciful and surreal. With La main paysage (The landscape hand), Marie Denis will create landscapes of braided hay and lucerne, while Karine Bonneval will make unusual extensions of plants, with feathers, pearls and buttons. These Phylloplasties will be laid out in a humorous way in the Château’s exhibition rooms.
This spring, in the field of photography, the Château’s Galleries will welcome the Paysages de Syrie (Landscapes of Syria) by Thibaut Cuisset, winner of the 2009 Fine Arts Academy Prize for photography, the photographs of trees and glaciers by Marc Deneyer and the black and white photos by Toshio Shimamura, Esprit de Fleurs (Spirit of Flowers). Special homage will be paid to Marc Riboud, the great traveller, from September onwards and we will be able to enjoy the delights of his mountains of China, the ruins of Angkor and many other unusual or sublime landscapes.
Finally, it should be noted that, until November 2011, the Château will be hosting the work of Jannis Kounellis, a major figure in the world of “Arte Povera”, in an area of almost 600 square metres, within the context of a unique commission from the Centre Region for the Domain of Chaumont-sur-Loire.