Tuesday, 28 September 2021

These Passing Things at Fountains Abbey

These Passing Things, at Fountains Abbey, by Steve Messam.

It's not that I actually disliked the installation. It was colourful and fun. I guess...

It's just that it's yet another modern art installation hosted by the National Trust which has absolutely nothing to do with the space in which it is presented. (See also: Rievaulx Abbey and the Moon. And Rievaulx Abbey and the Brocken Spectre.) Garish colours and novelty alone are not "art" - they are just cynical ploys to increase visitor numbers, while contributing nothing to the heritage of the venue.

You know what is interesting about Fountains Abbey? The fact that there are clearly peregrines roosting somewhere nearby, picking off the many pigeons that live among the ruins. Why not have peregrine watching events? Bird of prey demonstrations? Something genuinely relevant to the place. Rather than a piece of colourful corporate "art".

Anyway. Just as well for the NT that I'm already a life member, because I wouldn't be becoming one now, or recommending it to anybody else.