Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Harewood House

I visited the grounds of the 18th Century Harewood House on a very hot July day. We ambled through the grounds and by the lake, through the walled garden and then later in the day arrived at the house itself to admire its topiary. Hidden within the clipped hedges
were little pink flowers.
The borders had been sprinkled with a hosepipe; I imagine it is quite a task in the long hot days we had this summer
but everything  was looking well watered
And here stood Orpheus with a leopard resting on his arms. The sculpture is by Astrid Zydower (1930-2005) who in 1975 starting with a 12" maquette  to make a small sculpture for Lincoln Kirstein, he  happened to be a mutual friend of the late Lord Harewood through his involvement in opera. When the  fountain which stood on this spot crumbled and then was further damaged by frost in 1982  it was replaced in 1984 with this imposing and enlarged version of Orpheus who stands 8 foot high (I imagine with the plinth it must total 12 foot). The diminutive Astrid Zydower said it was the hardest thing she had ever done. The legend of Orpheus says his playing and singing could captivate both humans, animals and even inanimate things like rocks. The subject of Orpheus charming the animals has appeared in art from Roman mosaics to modern times.  After admiring the sculpture and formal garden we made our way to those umbrellas on the terrace where they were serving cream tea.
heading past the remaining fountain, going up the steps

and settling down on by crisp white tablecloths, we and Orpheus gazed over the landscape created by Capability Brown as a lone red kite hovered low into view, its feathers ruffling in the thermals could be clearly seen which generated much excitement on the terrace.  If my zoom had not been in the car that might have been the next photo! 

An entry to ABC Wednesday - a journey through the alphabet sojourning at H


Roger Owen Green said...

Now THAT is an impressively HUGE structure~!

Reader Wil said...

These castles or mansions are so impressive and the park created by the famous Capability Brown is superb! He was the best.
Wil, ABCW Team.

Nanka said...

A leisurely trip with the day well spent in wonderful surroundings!!Nice photos too!!

Leslie: said...

Looks amazing! Next time we're in Yorkshire, we must visit. I mean it.

abcw team

Lea said...

Wow! Fantastic place!
Have a beautiful day!
Lea's Menagerie

Hazel Ceej said...

A grand house! Glad to learn something about frost today. Capability Brown sounds like he is behind every great garden in England.