As the sun set over Croome, coloured lights shone on the Adam Speaks Tree House art installation. The project paid tribute to the influence designer Robert Adam had on the estate. But the beautiful landscape combined with the colours of nature seemed to insist on a nod to Capability Brown.
The Adam Speaks project
The project began with a search for an emerging artist. Under the guidance of national artist Hew Locke, the successful applicant would create an exciting new artwork. The theme would be the influence that Robert Adam had on Croome. The estate itself is developing according to a new model for National Trust properties. As such, it acts as a showcase for contemporary arts including exhibitions, drama and poetry.
The artist chosen to take on this project was Chris Alton. He worked in partnership with local groups including St Barnabas and Kimichi Schools, Writing West Midlands and the Birmingham Institute of Theatre Arts. Together, they developed both the design for the artwork and the theme for its launch.
The project culminated in a piece of art taking the form of a treehouse. Constructed at ground level, the treehouse is accessible to all. Its shape and style reflects that of the house itself. It forms a small but usable area where families and groups will be able to gather. The construction will remain in place for the next 12 months.
Lia and I headed to Croome on Saturday for the exhibition launch. There were performances throughout the day from the Sixth Form College Worcester and Birmingham Institute of Theatre Arts & Kimichi School. Performance poet Kirly McGeachie was on hand with a creative experience, and visitors could build an Adam Speaks inspired structure. The house is already starting to look rather festive with some beautiful Christmas trees on display. Oh, and there were plenty of cupcakes!
It was a glorious day, with the natural light highlighting the beauty of the Croome estate and the Adam Speaks Tree House. We are regulars at Croome anyway, it is one of the girls’ favourite places to cycle. We’ll be heading back there soon because Libby can’t wait to see the tree house.
For more information on the project and its timeline, head to the National Trust Croome website. The installation will be there for the next year, so do look out for it if you visit Croome.