For as long as it has existed, the sculpture garden at Talland Bay Hotel has been one of the most popular features with visitors. Quirky, curious and amusing, every guest seems to have their favourite item and the reactions can be as much fun as the works themselves! The pieces make wonderful viewing whether you book for a meal or afternoon tea with us, or arrive for one of our great Cornish escapes.
We are often asked about the origins of the sculptures, not to mention other crafty or creative locations in Cornwall. Hence this month we thought we would tell you a little more about the works and further recommended places to visit to see art and sculpture.
The Budgie Bench
Bold, colourful and larger than life, this garden sculpture is always a big favourite with guests. We have some quite classical looking sculptures and works of art at the hotel, but this isn’t one of them. In fact creator Richard Austen’s route to beauty is with a chainsaw! The bench itself was specially commissioned in 2014 after the hotel had seen another of his works; the owners loved the fact that many of his pieces could be sat on or used, rather than just enjoyed visually.
Aside from our bright and "chirpy" bench, he has made countless wood sculptures, from giant creatures to one of the largest versions of the classic “Green Man” we have ever seen! His website and Facebook page are well worth a look for previous work and current inspiration.
The Sleepy Old Man
Another firm favourite, this garden sculpture is another that guests love. In fact, it just begs to be interacted with and is probably the work that generates the most “selfies” in the whole garden. Many of our guests have kept the old man company in the past years, or even lent him their hat or draped an arm around his shoulders.
By pure coincidence, the sculptor is also a Richard Austin, but a totally different sculptor to our Budgie Bench creator (what are the chances of that?). This Austin works in metal, with a love for "hyper real" human figures with an amazing attention to detail. He has had many works commissioned, including a beautifully reflective statue of Robert Burns created by the Scottish National Trust. Other gems include a miner, town crier and a stunning sculpture of a surfer, commissioned for the Surf Championship, standing proudly on Malibu Beach! His excellent site is well worth a look, with plenty of other places to see further sculptures: www.sculptureworkshop.co.uk
Wire Frame Fairies
Another of our best loved sculptures, visitors always love the wire fairies, perfectly frozen to complement the amazing views out across Talland Bay! This piece is very much in keeping with artist Derek Kinzett’s style. He has created all manner of wire-framed sculptures whose subjects range from mythological creatures and dragons to studies of everyday people. For a host of intricate, beautifully rendered characters, his site is well worth a look: derekkinzettwiresculpture.co.uk
Looking around the rest of the gardens, we have so many sculptures of all kinds it would be difficult to know where to start! We wouldn't want to spoil all the surprises either. Why not come and see for yourself and choose your favourite?
Other Outdoor Art Attractions and Sculpture Gardens to Visit in Cornwall
For any art lovers visiting the region, or indeed any visitor who fancies a day out with a difference, there are some wonderfully unusual, eccentric and alternative places to visit in Cornwall. Here are just some of our favourite sites to see outdoor art, crafts and much more besides:
Fowey River Gallery
Fowey River Gallery makes perfect browsing for art lovers (image: Fowey River Gallery Facebook page)
The Cornish town of Fowey (pronounced “foy”!) is always a great place to take a day trip. Besides local shops and local attractions, it also has the fantastic Fowey River Gallery. Various Talland Bay Hotel artworks came from the shop, including both paintings and sculptures. A grand selection of over 50 talented Cornish artists are on display in the shop, with ceramics, jewelry and hand-crafted gifts besides many evocative paintings. For more details, see: www.foweyrivergallery.co.uk
The Ebenezer Gallery, Polperro & East Cornwall Society of Artists
Art for every taste in Polperro (Image: Ebenezer Gallery Facebook page)
Another stimulating site, this gallery is based in a former chapel. For over 70 years the East Cornwall Society of Artists has nurtured local work and the centre exhibits a vibrant mixture of work of many styles and mediums, with something to catch the eye for all tastes. Open from May to October, the Spring Exhibition is especially well worth a look.
The Eden Project
Sculptures by many national and Cornish artists are a key part of the pioneering Cornish attraction, which continues to be one of the best in the UK. What guests tend to love most is its complexity and irregularity! Even if you’ve been before, there is always another twist or secret corner to uncover.
For a full lineup of current events and things to see at Eden, visit www.edenproject.com
(Aztec style scuptures (above) join a giant bee, wood carvings and so much more at Eden. Don’t forget the camera!)
The Lost Gardens of Heligan
Another of those secret gems, Heligan is one of those delightfully unique places to visit in Cornwall where art and nature meet. From dizzyingly beautiful exotic plants to sleeping giants, there is something different at every turn… and we don’t wan’t to give away any more than that!
One of Cornwall's greatest garden attractions, Heligan is always a delightful detour (Image: Heligan Facebook page)
Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens
Tremen-dous viewing near Penzance (See the Temenheere Facebook page for more highlights, events and information)
For those heading way out west, these grounds near Penzance in West Cornwall are another great place to explore for anyone who enjoys a good walk with a few surprises. Permanent works by the likes of David Nash and James Turrell complement the lush gardens, fusing natural and manmade creativity. Complete with a café and design shop, it’s a great afternoon. The site opens from February 11th each year.
Stay at Talland Bay, the most Unique of Hotels in Cornwall!
With amazing views, award-winning cuisine and premises bristling with eccentric, beautiful and unexpected art, Talland Bay Hotel makes a setting for Cornish breaks like no other! We are open year round, whether you are looking for a romantic escape on the coast, fine dining or afternoon tea with one of the most spectacular views in the South West. Listed in the Sawdays Guide and regulars in the regions press and hotel awards, Talland Bay is one of the most delightfully different boutique hotels Cornwall can offer. See our Facebook page and offers section for current deals and special break packages in 2017 and beyond.