During the Bank Holiday weekend at the end of May I visited Borde Hill Garden in West Sussex. The multitude of exotic flowers, shrubs and trees is impressive enough to warrant a trip, but I wanted to go there for another reason: the Sculpture Exhibition.
Thirteen artists are represented by over fifty artworks. The sculptures range from small ceramic pieces by Adrian Bates that remind me of carnivorous plants, to large stone works such as Lloyd Le Blanc's Bird of Paradise Fountain.
I had expected to see large abstract works like those displayed at Chatsworth House. But the sculptures on show at Borde Hill are on a more human scale; smaller, often figurative, and certainly less expensive.
The top 5 sculptures at Borde Hill, in my opinion (and in no particular order), are:
1. Little Scrap Bird by Ptolemy Elrington. Although not a huge fan of this artist, I like the confrontational pose and the wide-eyed stare of this bird. Perhaps it's simply preparing to take off, but it felt aggressive at my head height.
2. Many Happy Returns by Matt Smart. It's completely daft and it made me laugh out loud when I saw it from a distance. It's also refreshingly different to every other sculpture in the exhibition.
3. Caesar by Matt Smart. The second work by this artist that caught my attention. It doesn't look wholly original but its size (and location in this exhibition) gave it oomph that other sculptures lacked.
4. Small Spiral by Philippa Macarthur. A pleasing circular sculpture on a satisfyingly rusty plinth. This is my favourite of her pieces and was situated at the end of a narrow walk, a location that did it a huge favour.
5. Pair of Owls by Daren Greenhow. Perhaps it's the cyclist in me but I was charmed by the use of chainrings in this sculpture, and its symmetry.
The Sculpture Exhibition at Borde Hill Garden is open until 1st September 2015.
Richard Pettitt, cartoonist.