Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Venus de Frog

This old stone byre once a home for cows and goats now becomes an artist's hideaway at Clearbeck House gardens. Located amongst the Tatham Fells in north Lancashire the land was once a farm but the Osborne family have over the decades changed it from dereliction to a mix of formal garden and wilderness with follies and sculptures.  Lets take a walk around the corner of this old byre
As you can see from the ferns and mossy tree trunk this is a  damp and shaded corner.  No need to squint at the sign I'll go closer
and here it is "Venus de Frog",
and here she is, keeping an eye on the frogs,  The byre had been built with a stone arched niche to contain the Victorian plaster cast  of the Venus de Milo.  It has to be kept dry, as must all plaster, and she watches the flow of Clear Beck at her feet.
I would love to know about the Victorian farmer who dreamt up this idea and it does rather typify the wonderful Victorian mindset.  Why have a plain structure when there is an opportunity to embellish.   The original Hellenic Venus de Milo was discovered in the 1820s and became a sensation so perhaps that might have been something to do with the choice of sculpture.  Alternatively as she is Aphrodite (Venus in Roman mythology) who is not only goddess of love but also purity and one would hope the high fell spring water would be pure. I imagine in past times the beck would be the only source of water.  

An entry to ABC Wednesday, a journey through the alphabet, this week sojourning at V here


Rajesh said...

Wonderfully interesting place.

Ann said...

Fantastic cottage for an artist,
such a picturesque spot.

Leslie: said...

What an intriguing spot! Beautiful surroundings

abcw team

photowannabe said...

Oh my, I would love to visit there. Talk about photo opportunities.

Roger Owen Green said...

what a wunderbar setting.

ROG, ABC Wednesday

ellen b. said...

This looks like the kind of spot I'd like to explore.

Reader Wil said...

I like those quaint old buildings! And I like such gardens, which are a bit wild in vegetation.
Thanks for your comment on "Veterans". Yes, we should not forget all those French citizens that died during the bombardments in Normandy.As I said in my post: "In the end wars know no winners only losers. Every soldier is damaged and traumatised."

Wil, ABCW Team.

Steve Hicks said...

Hi! - Just stumbled across your blog, and see that you have had a trip out to Haverigg! (thanks for the link to our Website - SCSSA.co.uk). I read that you found the Tadpoles! but did you also find the shoal of Sticklebacks in the freshwater pool at the end of the drainage pipe? It's quite an unusual sight to see freshwater fish swimming happily in a pool on the beach! Surprisingly this pool and pipe-end are often covered by the tide on "Springs", and as the Stickle's always seem to still be there when the tide goes out, I can only assume that they retreat back up the pipe to the field dykes when they detect the salt-water appearing!!

Joy said...

Haverigg is one of my favourite places Steve because of its coastal variety. No I haven't spotted the Sticklebacks so I'll be heading for that pool, how interesting. Thanks for your comments.