There may be any number of reasons to visit the tiny village of Wilkieston in West Lothian but none better surely than to visit Jupiter Artland where you can stroll through 100 acres of carefully kept parkland, bumping into Gormleys and Goldsworthys.
Jupiter Artland, set within the beautiful estate of Bonnington House just outside Edinburgh is the brain child of Nicky and Robert Wilson. With its opening in May 2009, Nicky, a graduate in sculpture from Camberwell School of Art fulfilled a long-held ambition to create a sculpture park showcasing contemporary sculpture of some of the most important artists of their time. With iconic works by leading international sculptors including Ian Hamilton Finlay and Antony Gormley and works by Turner Prize short-listed artists Cornelia Parker, Nathan Coley and Jim Lambie, Jupiter Artland has firmly established itself as an exciting and important addition to the UK art scene offering visitors a cultured and artistically diverse day out in a relaxing and natural environment.
Jupiter Artland triumphs in its partnership of art and nature with some art works almost ambushing passers-by as they round a corner whilst others stand bold against the backdrop of rolling grassland and despite the fact there’s no White Rabbit to be seen you’re bound to feel like you’re in some sort of Wonderland. The outdoor sculpture park features specially commissioned site specific artworks from leading sculptors and land artists such as Charles Jenck’s Cells of Life and Anish Kapoor’s Suck as well as works on permanent display by artists including Marc Quinn, Shane Waltener, Peter Liversidge, Tania Kovats, and Henry Castle. What Nicky and Robert Wilson have created at Jupiter Artland is an art lover’s dream.
With no set route through the park, visitors are taken on a voyage of discovery, stumbling upon works by contemporary artists such as Alec Finlay, Laura Ford and Anya Gallaccio and if all that wasn’t enough to whet your appetitie you might just be lucky enough to come upon the vintage 1953 Silverstreak caravan offering an array of mouth-watering home-made food, artisan coffee, organic teas and juices as well as delicious home-baking.
Education is at the heart of Jupiter Artland and the Jupiter Artland Foundation is a charity committed to the theme of self-discovery. Free visits are offered to schools, universities and formal education institutions throughout the academic year. The Foundation offers an engaging programme of activities such as workshops in a variety of artistic disciplines including sculpture, mosaics and, photography.
Jupiter Artland is a pioneering place that aims to challenge, inspire, inform and delight and while few could only ever hope to emulate the beauty of the setting and the richness of the artwork it would be impossible to visit Jupiter Artland and come away feeling anything other than uplifted.
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