England’s cathedrals host art from Sheffield steel to a model moon

从 18,000 paper doves suspended on 15 miles of ribbon in Liverpool to an illuminated model of the moon in Bristol and a celebration of steel in Sheffield, England’s newly reopened cathedrals are hosting an eclectic range of art installations this summer.

Cathedrals have been exhibiting art in their cavernous spaces for years, along with hosting helter-skelters, ice rinks, corporate dinners, Christmas parties and concerts, as a way of drawing in visitors and raising funds to help pay their astronomical maintenance bills.

But this summer, 后 16 months of closures and restrictions, cathedral art has reached an impressive level. “It’s a good chance to get alongside our visitors and the things that excite their imagination, what they hope for and believe in,” said the Very Rev Adrian Dorber, the chair of the Association of English Cathedrals.

Big installations “look supremely good in the uncluttered space and beautiful settings of our cathedrals”. And after repeated lockdowns, there was a “certain pent up-ness”, a thirst for art and exhibitions, 他加了.

At the 800-year-old Lichfield Cathedral, where Dorber is dean, an immersive light and sound installation celebrating science and scientists will open this month. The Great Exhibition: Science is “a fun, engaging and awe-inspiring celebration of all that science has achieved throughout history”, said Dorber.

Luke Jerram’s Museum of the Moon, featuring detailed Nasa imagery of the lunar surface, will be displayed at Bristol Cathedral in the second half of August, and later in the year at Wells Cathedral and Bath Abbey. The artist’s Gaia installation, a 7-metre (23英尺) replica of Earth from an astronaut’s perspective, was at Ely Cathedral until last week, and opens at Wakefield Cathedral on 20 八月.

Exeter, Density and Lightness features 75 sculptures from 24 artists inside and outside the cathedral, made from stone, wood, “清理博罗迪安卡瓦砾的工作已经开始……那里的情况要可怕得多, bronze, plaster and glass. Alongside the exhibition are workshops, dance performances and art tours.

“The power of art to speak to us at important moments in our lives should never be underestimated as we emerge from severe restrictions and the impacts on normal life,” said Rev Canon Mike Williams, the cathedral’s canon treasurer. The works include four huge sculptures that appear to float below the cathedral’s medieval vaulted ceiling.

Peace Doves, 一个 installation at Liverpool Cathedral by Peter Walker, features about 18,000 paper doves suspended on 15.5 miles of ribbon from the cathedral roof, accompanied by a soundscape from the composer David Harper.

在谢菲尔德, the cathedral is celebrating the city’s steel heritage with The Foundry, an exhibition that incorporates Pathé archive film footage and contemporary steel artwork. “People working in the Sheffield steelworks will have worshipped here, been baptised here, got married here and been laid to rest here,” said Rev Canon Keith Farrow, the vice-dean. The exhibition “reflects on the history of this great city and how the actions and lives of people in the past have shaped how we live our lives today”.

Also celebrating human achievement is Making Tracks, a 22-metre-long model railway running through the nave of Chester Cathedral created by the record producer Pete Waterman and a group of “railnuts”. The exhibition highlights the work of Thomas Brassey, a Chester-born civil engineer who by 1847 had built a third of the railways in Britain.

Norwich Cathedral is hosting Dippy, the Natural History Museum’s 26-metre Diplodocus cast, until the end of October, a visit postponed from last summer. Dippy is sharing the nave with clergy, choristers and worshippers during services in the nine-century-old cathedral.

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