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South West artists on show in ancient tithe barn

WILTSHIRE, ENGLAND. This weekend, three sculptors from the South West went on show in a 13th century tithe barn on the outskirts of the village of Tisbury in Wiltshire. The exhibition is organised by Messums Wiltshire, a branch of the London art gallery.

The barn was built in 1279 by the Abbess of Shaftsbury and is now listed as a grade 1 building which is the largest of its type in the country and one of the largest thatched buildings in England. It has undergone an extensive restoration programme for the last three years to save the building from virtual collapse, and is now open to the public for the fist time in its 700 years history.

The use of the barn as a unique context for artists is the vision of Johnny Messum, who hopes that Messums Wiltshire will become a cultural destination in the South West, with a diverse all year round calendar of exhibitions, performance, special events, talks and an arts education programme for children and young people.

The inaugural exhibition called 'Bronze and Stone', brings together the work of three sculptors who live and work in the South West: Tim Harisson, Bridget McCrum and Dominic Welch. It presents 15 classically monumental sculptures, in stone and bronze, which Johnny Messum describes as 'initiating a powerful response to the space, history and legacy of the building' and 'are an exploration and interpretation of the landscape, the natural life within it and the geological and historical archaeology of place and time'. It includes the work, The Hurdcott Stone 2012, by Time Harrisson which is carved from sandstone from the local Chicksgrove quarry and which is the same stone that was used for the walls of the barn in the 13th century.

From the 28th September 2016, Messums Wiltshire will be open throughout the year with free admission to the public. The barn also has a bar, cafe and shop.

Hours of opening:

Wednesday - Saturday

10.00 am - 5.00 pm

Sunday 10.00 am - 4.00 pm

Parking and disabled access available.

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