• Bray-Julian-Adolf-At-The-Pleasley-Vale-Arboretum-NG-FB.jpg
  • Bray-Julian-Adolf-At-The-Pleasley-Vale-Arboretum-NG-FB.jpg
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Artist: Julian Bray
Artwork materials: 
Artwork size: 
56 x 76 cm (82 x 98 cm framed)
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    If you are not satisfied with the artwork then you have 14 days after the date of collection to cancel your purchase by emailing info@mallgalleries.com.

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The Nottinghamshire woodland bears much evidence of its industrial past. Derelict mine buildings and bridges quietly sit under the canopy, but there is more to discover.

The hidden Vale of Pleasley near Mansfield houses the enormous complex of textile mills (1782) that used the river Meden as their power source. The woodland on the cliff above the owners’ houses is overgrown and lost within its tangle, allegedly an old arboretum. It is an odd space; at its centre is a limestone monolith where youths practise ‘bouldering; trees have found a footing and ornamented the block with foliage crests. Mature boughs create gloom and collapse into the space, and rhododendrons populate the floor. When I grew up in the 1970s, I was aware of a lingering taste of the second world war among the elders. References were made to it in stories and ‘633 Squadron’ was a Sunday afternoon staple. To find that the name ‘Adolf’ adorned the impressive monolith and a solitary rope swing dangled from an unseen bough increased the sense of other-wordiness I found inspiring in this quiet place.

Julian Bray

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