Tuesday, 28 September 2010

ABC Wednesday - Kerguéhennec

The beautiful château Kerguéhennec built in 1710 with different owners either side of the French Revolution, lies 20 miles north of Vannes in the department of Morbihan.  It is open in the Summer, the ground floor and kitchens show it as it would have been at its height, I especially liked the three bell pushes on the snooker table.  On the top floor is a changing contemporary art exhibition.  It is set in hundreds of acres of countryside laid out like a British Country House (jardin anglais) with two large lakes, woodland walks, bike tracks and an arboretum. So lots to see and do, or you could just lie down and relax, no entrance fee, 
Mimi by Markus Raetz
put your hands behind the head and gaze into the deep blue sky

Perhaps take a stroll round the lake where apart from grebe and dragonflies you might find unexpected things
floating in the middle like Marta Pan's Parcours flottant Number 2.

But one of the things that mesmerised me was my countryman Richard Long, famous for his walking or landscape art who here has 'A Circle in Brittany'( Un Cercle en Bretagne).
A close up view.  The rock is schiste, slate like but with high mineral content formed originally from clays and muds and become a crystalline foliated metamorphic rock. This rock was used in Brittany 6000 years ago for the many structures of prehistory that fill every corner of this part of the country, it looks marvellous in a  barrow grave. It is the intensity of  colour that Richard Long has managed to find.  How did he do that?  I was looking on the ground when I holidayed there for two weeks and never saw anything this rich a colour, my little pieces I brought back pale in comparison. It has the dates 1986-2007 by the title, some obtained from the area of St Just, which also has some other rather unusual rocks and ancient structures, a labour of love judging by those dates.

The grounds of the château contain many other pieces of contemporary art, it is the biggest sculpture park in France.  
This we could not quite make out as it was at the end of an avenue of trees but became clearer as we approached.  It is called The Seven Colums of  Mallarmé  (Sept Colonnes a Mallarmé).  I will admit my ignorance, I have never read any of his poems or works so I have not a clue what this means.  The columns all look similar but when you look closer they are all different.
As we looked back to the house along the long colonnade of trees. I wondered the significance. Any answers or clues from the well read and knowledgeable out there?
1000 Pots bétonnés une serre ancienne by Jean-Pierre Raynaud
(1000 Cemented Pots in an old greenhouse)
At least you know where you are with pots the colour of earth in a greenhouse, there are a few clues and it is a rather beautiful old structure.
A wonderful place to spend the day, a hidden gem  of paths, trees, lakes and art, but under threat, and in danger of going kaput, one of the three partners does not want to fund any longer.  There is a petition  against closure but in these strange times who knows what will happen to the Domain Kerguéhennec, I hope it is still there next time I go to France.   

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Sylvia K said...

Terrific post for the K Day! What a gorgeous place and your photos are superb! I do so hope it doesn't go kaput! That would be a tragedy! But who knows in these times????? Thanks for sharing the beauty! Have a great evening!


Gramma Ann said...

What a wonderful K day post. I enjoyed visiting it with you. Thanks for sharing a little bit of your vacation with us.

Roger Owen Green said...

love the rocks; want to climb them.

but I'm a sucker for a picture of something reflected in water.
ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Leslie: said...

What a fabulous place to visit! I'd love to lie on the grass gazing up at a brilliant blue sky! Love the reflection, too! :D

Vernz said...

This is awesome.. double wow.. love the palace on the first photo...

ABC Wednesday here

Cheryl said...

Gorgeous photos and some terrific reflections.

Tumblewords: said...

Superb! I'd love to be there - it does look like a kingly spot.

Beverley Baird said...

That first shot of the chateau is gorgeous - the reflection is so lovely!
I've never heard of the chateau = thanks for sharing info about it. Looks like quite a place to visit!

jabblog said...

It would be a shame for it to fade away. Such a beautiful chateau.