A new work by artists Langlands & Bell will be installed in Vanessa Bell’s attic studio at Charleston, a space overlooking the garden, which is usually closed to visitors.
It’s 61 years since Vanessa Bell last stepped foot in her attic studio. The presence of stains on the windowsill left from paint pots and jars, marks on the walls, and colourful patterns painted on to the doors and doorframes are the only clues left behind by an artist at work. But it is a space where the Sussex sky and Charleston’s garden are still as alive and inspirational today as they were for Bell over half a century ago.
Visitors are invited to ascend the stairs to the attic and reflect on and contemplate the artist’s creative experience – a place separate from the rest of the house that Vanessa Bell could retreat to.
The title of Langlands & Bell’s commission is drawn from a quote by Vanessa Bell and Duncan Grant’s daughter Angelica Garnett talking about the importance of this attic space to her mother. The free-to-visit installation will explore traces of the absent artist and consider the studio as a place of contemplation, creation, and as a personal haven.
Photos: Langlands & Bell