Tattershall Castle pierces the serentiy of Lincolnshire with its biker friendly artwork

By Mark Sheerin | 23 September 2011
Colour photo of a junk sculpture resembling a dinosaur or a bird
© Andrzej Liguz/more images.net
Exhibition: Dark Materials, Tattershall Castle, Lincolnshire, September 24 - October 16 2011

Next time a phalanx of leather-suited outlaws roar past you on their hogs, you might take comfort from these statistics. 88% of bikers say they would happily steer their way to an arts event and 95% are in the habit of going to National Trust properties.

So if the Trust have done their market research well enough, a biker-friendly show at Tattershall Castle will be a great success. Get ready for Dark Materials, a celebration of the gothic in a Grade-I listed pile.

The big draw is set to be a large-scale sculptural installation called Horsepower Vault. Along with the obvious biker reference, artist Tod Hanson is taking cues from what’s left of the building’s stained glass windows and the local heraldic insignia.

More alt-heritage attractions will be on offer in mid October when the castle hosts an Alternative Village Fete. Here, bikers will be able to enjoy heavy metal face painting, rockabilly barn dancing and corsetry demos. Junk metal sculptor Joe Rush will also be showing off his steampunk creations.

Curators Jane Greenfield and Kate Stoddart explain: “Every weekend, hundreds of bikers pass the Castle and rarely stop for a break and a drink, as they are not sure if they are welcome. This project aims to make it very clear that they are welcome to park up, rest, refresh and explore this incredible place.”

So if you are one of the National Trust’s diffident, polite, art-loving bikers, there’s clearly only one place to be for the coming weekends.

  • Open 11am-5pm Saturday-Wednesday. Admission £5.50/£4.95.

Visit Mark Sheerin’s contemporary art blog and follow him on Twitter.
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