Spirit of Cornwall garden heralds unique Chelsea collaboration
A unique creative collaboration, not usually seen in the industry, will bring together garden designers, architects, a composer, musicians and a sculptor, in the creation of the VTB Capital Garden – ‘Spirit of Cornwall‘ garden for the 2018 RHS Chelsea Flower Show.
Designed by multi award-winning garden designers Stuart Charles Towner and Bethany Williams – winners of Gold & Best in Show RHS Hampton 2015 – in collaboration with a multi-award winning creative team including Studio Evans Lane, Constella OperaBallet and sculptor Sheila Vollmer, the garden will be sited on Chelsea’s Main Avenue.
The Spirit of Cornwall will be a multi-sensory experience inspired by the work of renowned British sculptor, Barbara Hepworth with music composed by Leo Geyer, the Artistic director of Constella OperaBallet, specially commissioned by the Hepworth Estate and Tate St Ives to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Hepworth’s garden.
The design is conceived as a garden for a sculptor and a composer and will be contemporary in style, featuring a palette of subtropical and temperate plants, illustration the unique microclimates found throughout Cornwall. Concrete and steel form the only hard landscaping elements in the garden.
Metalwork will run through the garden forming a physical manifestation of the music, taken from the sound wave pattern with its peak expressed by the garden pavilion, a space for composing and performing – designed by award winning architectural practice, Studio Evans Lane.
Water features will echo the sea views from Hepworth’s garden, with a continuous circulation that reinforces the musical motif. Sculptures by international sculptor Sheila Vollmer, nestle among the planting, drawing inspiration from the rhythms of the garden design, the music and her own practice style.
The garden’s designer, Stuart Towner, (pictured left) is a freelance garden designer and RHS Consultant. His designs are a meeting point of the old and the new, using traditional materials with a contemporary and modern eye. He is the winner of several industry awards including RHS Gold at RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show in 2015.
Stuart defines his style as: “….. a mixture of Gertrude Jekyll and Frank Lloyd Wright. A modern man seeking new materials and ways to express design, but always with a fundamental traditional undertone running throughout everything I do.” His defining principle is the creation of timeless gardens: “It’s about spaces that embrace the past, live in the present and look to the future,” he says, pointing out that gardens are not static and will always be changing and need to evolve with the client, the property and the surrounding and wider landscape.
The garden’s sponsor, Investment Bank VTB Capital, has been established in the City of London for almost 100 years.
To discover more about Stuart’s work please visit: www.stuartcharlestowner.co.uk