National Trust project, Packwood House

I was shortlisted to produce an installation for the National Trust property Packwood House which, in the 1930's, belonged to Graham Baron Ash. He created his own private world, enveloping himself in the warmth of nostalgia. He threw great parties for the county and Packwood became a stage where he could live out his primly perfect version of country house hospitality.

The brief was to draw out the personality and identity of Baron Ash in a way that illuminates all that is great, unique, distinctive and cherished about Packwood; to influence mood and evoke an emotional connection that helps people to see Packwood through a contemporary lens.

I proposed 3 mirrored ‘plinths’ to be sited in the grounds at Packwood House, inspired in concept by the several small plinths in the house used to showcase treasured items, and visually by the many splendid tall Tudor chimneys. A plinths’ sole purpose is to display an object, to elevate it, allow it to be admired and looked at in a different way. With my concept, the display stand is scaled up; huge; taken out of context, becoming centre stage, and in doing so reflects Packwood and its gardens in a new way.

In the mirrored plinths Packwood becomes part of the landscape, absorbing its surroundings, almost disappearing yet revealing at the same time. Its visitors are invited to interact not only on but also within the reflections and mirrored surfaces, to get lost, escape and are celebrated and made to feel special for their valuable contribution.