Press Story

New additions to the display:

  • Ai Weiwei, Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads, 2010*
  • Edward Allington, From the Sex of Metals III, 1990
  • Willem Boshoff, Flagstone, 2016
  • Tom Friedman, Hazmat Love, 2016
  • Elisabeth Frink, Protomartyr, 1976
  • Idit Nathan and Helen Stratford, Further Afield, 2021

*Conserved and installed in a new location

We are delighted to announce new arrivals to Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) this holiday season. Put on your winter warmers, walking boots and breathe in the crisp fresh air while exploring the Park. If the weather takes a turn, visitors can enjoy exhibitions at one of our many indoor galleries, shops and eateries.

As winter falls across YSP, we welcome the changes to the sweeping Yorkshire landscape and art on view in the open air. Set within 500 acres of historic landscape, comprising parkland, woodland, formal gardens, heritage landmarks and lakes – YSP has around 100 modern and contemporary sculptures for visitors to enjoy. Our ever-changing display of sculptures, along with our programme of exhibitions and events, means that there is always something new to discover.

Hazmat Love (2016) by North-American artist Tom Friedman greets visitors in the Formal Garden. The stainless steel sculpture depicts two figures who might be embracing, wrestling or dancing together. The relationship between them is unclear and their facial expressions are hidden by mirrored masks. Friedman first created the work using flattened and shaped aluminium roasting trays to resemble baggy fabric, elastic, boots and thick gloves. The marks and folds made by the artist can still be seen in the surface of the work. Friedman described Hazmat Love as a scene of ‘dystopian romance – love in a toxic environment’ so is especially pertinent now.

Continue wandering through the Formal Garden and you will see Edward Allington’s sculpture installed last year has a new companion. From the Sex of Metals III (1990) joins From the Sex of Metals IV (1990), made in response to a question from art critic Stuart Morgan as to what sex Allington’s sculptures were to be read as. The artist was unable to answer satisfactorily, and so began these works as a way to explore the question further, asking “to what strange gender does steel belong or bronze, and what is sex but the most extraordinary and elaborate mechanism for filtering fluids?”

Further Afield (2021) by Idit Nathan and Helen Stratford is a series of sculptures sited around the Upper Lake for visitors to encounter and respond to. Created following two residencies at YSP in 2017 and 2018, each work is made from wooden railway sleepers, with words engraved into the surface. Certain words have been highlighted by the artists using brightly coloured paint. Over time, the wood will age and become embedded in the landscape of the Park. The instructions on the sculptures invite us to play, think, interact, and use our senses to experience our surroundings in new ways.

Rest and take in the Upper Lake’s wildlife at Willem Boshoff’s granite sculpture and seat. After yet another turbulent year, Flagstone (2016) provides the perfect space for contemplation. In summer 2018, South African artist Boshoff spent a month at YSP, researching and meticulously recording the flora and fauna. The residency was followed by an exhibition in Upper Space and the subsequent gift of Flagstone as a permanent work for YSP’s landscape.

We are delighted to welcome another work, Protomartyr (1976), by the pioneering British artist Elisabeth Frink who was an early supporter of Amnesty International. On loan from a private collection, the life-sized bronze depicts the first Christian martyr, Saint Stephen, who provided aid to those in need and was tragically sentenced to death. Frink modelled her works using plaster, often starting with metal rods or wire to provide structure. Once the plaster dried she would carve into it using chisels, files and an axe, before casting the work in bronze. Through this process she tried to capture inner and outer states of being.

YSP is committed to providing the highest level of care for artworks. From bracing winds to balmy heatwaves, our expert teams monitor and conserve sculptures so that they look their best for our visitors. A firm favourite, Ai Weiwei’s Circle of Animals / Zodiac Heads (2010) was originally installed at YSP in celebration of our 40th anniversary in 2017. This summer the dramatic group of 12 bronze animal heads underwent conservation and is back on display in their new position in the Lower Park. Standing at three metres high, the sculptures each weigh 363kg, and were conserved on-site over a period of three months.

After taking in the delights of YSP’s landscape and galleries, seek solace at award-winning The Weston Restaurant and enjoy locally sourced food and excellent coffee. As we wave goodbye to a difficult year, YSP is dedicated to keeping our visitors safe, providing an exceptional place to dive into art and nature.

As we look forward to 2022, YSP is thrilled to present a programme of new exhibitions, installations, events and learning initiatives to keep audiences informed and engaged. Highlights include an exhibition of drawings by sculptor and land artist David Nash, the first European museum exhibition of sculpture by iconic North American artist Robert Indiana, and Summer of Love – a season celebrating and exploring human connections, kindness, and the magnificent and complex diversity of love.

Visitors will be able to enjoy further additions to works in the open air throughout 2022.