Tag Archives: CO2morrow

Seaton Delaval: CO2morrow

13 Aug

CO2morrow by Marcos Lutyens and Alessandro Marianantoni. Photo Marcos Lutyens

Seaton Delaval Hall is hosting ‘CO2morrow’, a dynamic illuminated sculpture by Marcos Lutyens and Alessandro Marianantoni until the end of October 2010.

This imposing, 8m diameter, carbon-fibre structure is a creative response by the artists’ to the challenges posed by our changing climate. The shape is based on a zeolite molecule that absorbs carbon dioxide and is used in industrial scrubbers in order to remove the gas from the air.

Detail of Lutyens and Marianantoni's sculpture. Photo by Marcos Lutyens

CO2morrow by night. Photo Maureen Ritson

Reflecting the changing light from its many spines by day, and creating a striking illumination at night, the work sits in stark contrast to the symmetry of the Hall, design by Sir John Vanburgh and completed in 1728. But there is good reason for the sculpture to be here…

From the earliest stages of the Industrial Revolution in the 18th century, the family at the Hall were heavily involved with the coal mining industry.  Seaton Sluice, with which this activity is connected, is a sheer-sided channel that was blasted through the rocky coastline in 1763. It provided safe access for boats transporting coal to be sold across the country, whatever the weather and the tide. Today, in contrast, nearby town of Blyth is the centre for many new green technology companies, those  such as NAREC, who are responsible for the construction of wind turbines and whose site can be seen from the foot of Lutyens’ and Marianantoni’s sculpture at the Hall.

View from the sculpture looking out towards a local 'green industry' site

This is a sculpture that helps people discover the links in the landscape, between the heavy industry of the past, and the cleaner industries of the future. A sculpture that makes people look and think in more ways than one.

The sculpture was first commissioned by the National Trust for the Royal Academy’s 2009 GSK Contemporary Exhibition ‘Earth: art of a changing world’ and was exhibited on the exterior of the Royal Academy building before coming to Seaton Delaval this summer. Full credits for the sculpture can be found here.

Seaton Delaval Hall and the CO2morrow sculpture

Thanks to the staff for a warm welcome on a windy day.

Tom Freshwater