Visitors to Northamptonshire will be letting off steam in the picturesque surroundings of the Nene Valley as the area hosts a large scale contemporary public arts project rivalling any in the UK this summer.
Launched on 15 August after successful installations in Catalonia, Spain and Ireland, the three pieces on show are part of the CHANGING TRACKS project which has brought art inspired by railway heritage.
Using artists from Spain, Ireland and the UK, the project includes work by Xevi Bayona. Trace Track (pictured) is a 10 metre high railway track appearing and disappearing from a lake.
The installations, which add to the growing body of outdoor artworks in the UK landscape, explore the changing use of disused railway lines and reveal the hidden heritage, industry and local stories associated with the former railway lines.
Variety of themes
In Northamptonshire, the artworks reflect a variety of themes including the effect on local communities of the Beeching Cuts implemented 50 years ago this year to the impact of HS2 which is planned to go through the south of the county.
The artworks are situated on or adjacent to disused railway lines which are now used as walking or cycle paths, in locations as diverse as a former railway station (now Rushden Transport Museum) and a converted Goods Shed.
The project aims to engage with a wide range of leisure and recreational users such as walkers, cyclists, families, fishers, and local community groups including heritage, schools, colleges and local tourism businesses.
Graham Callister, Cultural Policy & Planning Manager for Northamptonshire County Council, said: “CHANGING TRACKS has brought something new to the Northamptonshire countryside that can be enjoyed by walkers, cyclists and families alike.
“The project has bridged communities in three countries and celebrated the legacy of our Victorian railways to the present day. We hope visitors will make tracks to see the project this summer.”
The UK leg of the project will enable visitors and other new audiences to engage with contemporary art by placing the artworks in non-traditional, outdoor exhibition spaces. These unique and highly ambitious artworks will remain in situ until mid-November in the UK.
For more information about CHANGING TRACKS, please visit www.changingtracks.eu
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