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Victorian Harewood – Contemporary Response to an Era

Harewood House, the main location for ITV’s blockbuster series Victoria, opens its magnificent doors on 24 March with an exhibition entitled Victorian Harewood.

The exhibition offers three contemporary art exhibitions influenced by Victorian Harewood alongside a close up view of the stunning costumes worn by many characters of Victoria, and a chance to see Harewood’s magnificent rooms, many of which are used as sets for the epic period drama.

credit Gavin Fernandes

The Empire Line is an exhibit of contemporary photography, by the photographer Gavin Fernandes, which will be shown in the Steward’s Room. The striking series takes fashion photography to look deeper at narratives of race, culture, history and the Victorian Empire.

credit Kathy Dalwood

A selection of 21st century re-interpretations of the Victorian bust by artist Kathy Dalwood from her Secret Society series will go in the China Room cupboards. Instead of sculpting in clay or stone the busts are made by direct casting from real things and found objects which are collaged together, moulded and cast in plaster.

Artist Steve Manthorp’s exquisitely detailed The Haunted Doll’s House based on M.R James classic ghost story of the same name, will go on display in The Old Library.

Sculptor Kathy Dalwood comments:

“As a child, I moved to Leeds because my father, sculptor Hubert Dalwood, was offered a Gregory Fellowship at Leeds University (a programme which invited artists and writers to be part of the creative community in Leeds).  My father had a very active role in the artistic community.   Leeds City Art Gallery and the Hepworth, Wakefield both hold his work in their collections.

My father was very much a landscape enthusiast so we often went on picnic day trips to the surrounding countryside and the Dales.  We usually drove via Harewood village but the house itself seemed remote, inaccessible and otherworldly   to me as a child.   Fast forward several decades and I finally get to see inside the spectacular edifice of my childhood imaginings – along with my sculpture!  The proposal to exhibit at Harewood felt like a way of reconnecting with Yorkshire,  with my father  and his work,  with my childhood and upbringing  and I am absolutely delighted that this particular collection of work – the plaster busts – allowed this serendipitous invitation to come my way.”
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Nicola Stephenson, Exhibition Producer from Harewood House adds: “The juxtaposition of these three art collections really brings our house alive. They present questions to the viewer and pull you into curious stories, bringing the history and Victorian era sharply into a new focus.”