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Art in the Arches

During 2018 the former animal sheds on the north side of the courtyard at Top Lodge were converted into an art gallery/studio by the Forestry Commission.

The renovated space was opened by Paddy Harrop, FC's Forest Management Director Central England, an an event on 14th September. 

The Arches now serve as a project space and art studio for projects run by Fermynwoods Contemporary Art. The first project entitled The Forest is the Museum, featured a programme of "artists in residence" and associated activities.

Two of their works are described below. 

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Now we rise and we are everywhere

6-9 September 2019

This short exhibition and series of performances is by Danielle Lemaire and is inspired by the music and times of Nick Drake (1948-1974). The exhibition and performances explore what makes Drake's work so admired today. He lived in the psychedelic 1960s and 1970s and in his work there is a tension between the reality of everyday life and the potential of something big and unknowable. lemaire extends those tensions to Brexi-era Britain with drawings of the domestic but uncanny, sited within the rural Fineshade Wood.

Exhibition in the Arches 6 – 9 September 2019 
10am-4pm daily



Friday 6 September, 6:30 pm 
Celebratory gathering including performances by Danielle Lemaire and Eerie Wanda (solo)

Saturday 7 September, 2pm 
Gathering in the woods including performances by Danielle Lemaire and Eerie Wanda, as well as a talk with Jason Creed, publisher of Nick Drake: The Pink Moon Files

More details here


The next installation in The Arches was by the first "artist in residence" Edwina fitzPatrick. Her work is explained below and in more detail here.

The vertical panels on display in The Arches were supplemented by banners in the wood, which were wrapped around the actual mature trees whose archive was discovered by the removal of cores.  Friends of Fineshade were very pleased to be involved in this project and many of our conversations and memories of weather events were featured as part of Edwina's work.

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Click above to see a video showing the installation in The Arches, alongside some of the community's memories of severe weather.

Edwina's work remained on display in the wood  and The Arches until December 2018.

The Archive of the Trees

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Sadly, in 2021 Fermynwood Contemporart Arts' involvement at Top Lodge came to an end
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