Yorkshire Times
Voice of the North
2:17 PM 7th June 2019

First Piece Hall Sculpture Commission Selected For Scottish Show

The Blanket by David Murphy
The Blanket by David Murphy
The acclaimed first visual arts commission by The Piece Hall Trust has been chosen to be part of the 2019 Borders Sculpture Park at Mellerstain in the Scottish Borders.

A resounding success with the public visiting the Grade I listed building, ‘The Blanket’ by David Murphy will be part of the annual event at the Robert Adam designed stately home from 5 July until 30 September 2019. At 15m x 8m the ‘fabric’, made up of interlacing steel tubes, will be trickier to sit on than the average woollen blanket but is sure to make a significant impact within Mellerstain’s formal gardens and Italianate terraces.

Visitors of all ages from across the world including York, Cumbria, Sheffield, Italy, France and India came to The Piece Hall between 25 January – 7 April 2019 to see the sculpture which was spread out over a corner of the iconic courtyard. Comments included:

‘A subtle and fitting response to the history of The Piece Hall.’

‘Fantastic – wonderful to see the space being responded to in such an exciting and sympathetic way.’

‘David, your work has inspired a passion for sculpture that I never had before. I am looking forward to following your future work.’

Inspired by the rich textiles history of The Piece Hall, ‘The Blanket’ was commissioned in partnership with Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) and co-funded by the Arts Council National Lottery Project Grant programme. Grand Central were also on board as Community Sponsor of the extensive programme of events linked to the installation.

Nicky Chance-Thompson, Chief Executive of The Piece Hall Trust, commented: “The Blanket received a fantastic reception from everyone who came to see it this spring. It is our hope that through these commissions we can add to a growing number of destinations in Yorkshire who offer interesting visual arts, adding to the impressive culture pedigree already established across the region. The Piece Hall provides an unrivalled heritage venue for new work and it is wonderful to see that through David’s beautiful creation, The Piece Hall is spreading the message of cultural brilliance from Halifax across the world.”

Catherine Mitchell, Senior Relationship Manager, Arts Council England adds “Yorkshire is renowned for the variety and excellence of its sculpture and the Arts Council was delighted to support The Blanket through our National Lottery Project Grants. This amazing sculpture was enjoyed by so many people when it was at The Piece Hall and I’m really pleased that even more will get the opportunity to see it when it travels to Scotland.”

Building on the success of The Blanket, The Piece Hall Trust are sourcing funding for a second sculpture and visual arts commission for 2020, entitled ‘Platform’.

This commission will once again be created in partnership with Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) but also, new for 2020, Arts Charity Dean Clough [ACDC] and The Artworks.

An opportunity for artists to respond to the rich heritage of textiles, making and production in Halifax the brief calls for a large scale sculpture that would be displayed in the courtyard from March – June 2020 as well as content for a simultaneous exhibition in The Piece Hall Gallery.