A major new sculpture park has opened in the grounds of Compton Verney Art Gallery in Warwickshire, featuring striking works by modern and contemporary artists from around the world.

Compton Verney Art Gallery & Park

A range of sculptures have taken over the parkland at Compton Verney.

The sculpture park offers a radical reinvention of the grounds with modern and contemporary sculptures set to transform the Georgian setting. The opening forms part of the anniversary celebrations marking 20 years since the art gallery first opened its doors to the public and builds on the work it has played host to.

It’s said that the sculptures, by eight different artists, will interact with the natural setting and prompt questions relating to the past and future of the surrounding ground. 

Among the displays is the more unusual Piss Flowers by Helen Chadwick. Comprising a series of bronze sculptures that resemble flowers, Chadwick and her partner David Notarius took turns urinating on a flower-shaped metal mould in snow to create the shapes that form the sculptures. 

Piss Flowers by Helen Chadwick

Source: FXP London

Helen Chadwick’s unique sculptures are sure to offer a talking point.

You can also see Overgrown House, a large structural outline of an overgrown house made from black galvanized steel by Permindar Kaur, as well as Spider which is a bronze sculpture over seven-metres wide and over three metres high by the artist Louise Bourgeois.

Geraldine Collinge, Compton Verney chief executive officer (CEO), said: “For 20 years Compton Verney has been welcoming visitors to its extraordinary exhibitions, events and grounds, and in 2024 we are marking this important anniversary with our most wide-ranging and ambitious programme to date, starting off with the launch of our major, new sculpture park.

“We believe Compton Verney is an extraordinary, unusual, creative experience - a place for the curious, where all are welcome to be inspired, delighted, challenged and rejuvenated. Whether you’ve been visiting us for 20 years or have yet to visit, we look forward to welcoming everyone to come and explore and see what Compton Verney can offer them in this packed 20th birthday year.” 

Louise Bourgeois' SPIDER, 1996 installed at Storm King Art Center, Mountainville, NY in 2007.

Source: © The Easton Foundation Licensed by DACS, UK

Louise Bourgeois’ Spider is more than seven metres wide.

Works by Sarah Lucas (b.1962), Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010), Helen Chadwick (1953-1996), Permindar Kaur (b.1965), Larry Achiampong (b.1984), Nicolas Deshayes (b.1983) and Augustas Serapinas (b.1990) will be found amongst the wildlife, oak, ash and lime trees, wildflower meadows and bridges that were first laid out by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown in 1768.

Other highlights to look out for

On top of the Old Town Meadow, sits a new work reimagined especially for Compton Verney, Standtune (2024) by Augustas Serapinas. Employing an ancient fencing technique developed for defence purposes in Sweden and made from local wood, the sculpture acknowledges the ancient village of Compton Murdak that once stood on the site.

From this vantage point, visitors can look up the hill and see four large flags which is part of Larry Achiampong’s afro-futuristic project Relic Traveller: Phase. The design of each flag features 54 stars that represent the 54 countries of Africa and highlight the African diasporic identity. The colours green, black and red reflect its land, its people and the struggles the continent has endured, and the field of yellow gold represents a new day and prosperity. 

Groups visiting Compton Verney benefit from priority admission, a dedicated welcome, free admission for coach drivers plus optional catering. For more information go to www.comptonverney.org.uk.