Newer posts are loading.
You are at the newest post.
Click here to check if anything new just came in.

This week's arts diary

Turner winner Richard Wright does a castle makeover, plus new orchestras to watch, and the Tate Modern's new lieutenant

Turner winner Richard Wright's castle makeover

In the many-towered Lismore Castle in County Waterford – once the home of Sir Walter Raleigh; later of chemist Sir Robert Boyle; now part of the estates of the Duke of Devonshire – the present occupier, Lord Burlington (son of the duke), has followed the family tradition of commissioning art. Back in the day it was Van Dyck and Canova who received the family's patronage; now it's Richard Wright, winner of the 2009 Turner prize, who has created an extraordinary painting (pictured below) in a turret-like folly in the castle grounds known as the "monkey house". The Wright wall-painting is part of an exhibition curated by Polly Staple, director of the Chisenhale Gallery in east London, in the gallery space carved out of a previously disused wing of the castle. The exhibition, called Still Life, brings together textured flower paintings by Gillian Carnegie with works by Seth Price, Mark Leckey and Anne Collier. Well worth a look – and a wander around the glorious castle gardens – if you are heading to Ireland over the summer.

New orchestras to watch on the Royal Philharmonic shortlist

The shortlists for the annual Royal Philharmonic awards, which reward the best endeavours in classical music, have been announced, ahead of the prize ceremony on 10 May. (Playwright Mark Ravenhill, whose debut opera production, The Coronation of Poppea, has just opened at the King's Head theatre in London, will be guest speaker on the night.) It's great to see that for the ensemble award, the mighty City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra is up against two very youthful outfits – the fabulous National Youth Orchestra, and Aurora, a dynamic group of players, many in their 20s, who are making a name for themselves as an exciting new force in the sometimes conservative world of classical music. They've just had the good news that they will receive regular funding from Arts Council England; and you can see them at Kings Place Concert Hall in London in May, where they are presenting a short series devoted to the hip New York composer Nico Muhly. Their leader is Thomas Gould, whom I saw last week leading the Britten Sinfonia (another regular gig for him) in works including the virtuosic Sitkovetsky arrangement for strings of Bach's Goldberg Variations. He's been out of music college for only a handful of years, but his musicianship is enthralling. A talent to watch.

Another top lieutenant for the Tate

Chris Dercon has just – without fanfare – started work as director of Tate Modern. The Belgian steps into a role as director of the most outstanding success story in the recent history of British museums, but he must also deal with the ongoing fundraising headache of its £212m extension, which will not be finished in time for the Olympics, as originally promised (though the underground oil tanks should be in use by then as a venue for video and performance art). One staff member raved to me about Dercon – noting that Nicholas Serota, director of Tate, has appointed two top lieutenants (the other being Penelope Curtis at Tate Britain) with the guts to stand up to him. © Guardian News & Media Limited 2011 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

Don't be the product, buy the product!