Soundscapes, sculptures and artworks at Wakehurst


Sussex residents can immerse themselves in the magic of nature this summer with a brand new evening event: The Wonder Project.

For a few nights visitors will have the chance to take part in a multisensory, after-hours art trail exploring the wild landscape of Wakehurst in Ardingly.

Spokeswoman Arabella Sneddon said: “Curated by arts collective Shrinking Space, who have previously worked with the likes of Somerset House and the Barbican Centre, The Wonder Project will encompass specially commissioned soundscapes, sculptures and artworks from a roster of esteemed UK artists and creative studios. Audiences will meander through Wakehurst’s woods, meadows and glades to interact with installations embedded in the landscape.

“The Wonder Project will encourage people to step out of their comfort zones, step away from their go-to-responses to any given situation, and attempt to wonder about where they find themselves in a new light. The experience will culminate with visitors coming together to witness the sun set over the rolling green hills of Sussex.”

Each installation is inspired by the beauty of the gardens.

Arabella continued: “The artists have also worked with scientists from Kew’s Millennium Seed Bank, situated at Wakehurst, to bring to life some of the vital science work undertaken there to preserve and conserve the seeds of the world’s plants for future generations.

“One such installation comes from renowned British-Ghanaian artist-in-residence at Somerset House Studios, Larry Achiampong, who has exhibited widely in the UK and abroad. Achiampong’s work is inspired by archival research and his Afro-futurist ‘Relic Traveller’ project. He has collaborated with writer Aida Amoako to create a site-specific work, featuring four text-based sculptural elements within one of Wakehurst’s wildflower meadows.

“Further on along the trail, the sound of Hidden Orchestra’s sonic woodland will reach the ears of visitors. Brighton-based artist Joe Acheson and sound designer Tim Southorn have collaborated to create an entrancing soundscape within one of Wakehurst’s woodland glades.”

Creative video-design studio Limbic Cinema have also constructed a light sculpture to reflect the solar cycle, while artists Eloise Moody and Vicky Long have created Colourfield, a project that asks people to reimagine colour in response to the wild environment.

Guests can pick up a glass of wine and something to eat before their journey. Evenings are 7pm-9.30pm (last entry 7.30pm) from July 26-29 and August 2-5.

Tickets are £15 (£6 for ages 4-16, free for under 4s).

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