I set my expectations sky-high. I had visions of artistic photos of all the sculptures, me floating around them in a pretty dress in the type of post worthy of Rosie from The Londoner (one of my favourite blogs). Unfortunately, I need to file this particular offering in the category entitled "Things That Never Happen To Rosie", because I hadn't banked on an arctic gale blowing across the countryside, making it seriously unpleasant to be outdoors in anything less than full winter gear.
I had already abandoned the dress idea for jeans and a coat. You would think that would be enough in April, wouldn't you? Apparently not. And yes, we all know I am a wimp when it comes to the cold, but even Mike was suffering, so it was officially FREEZING. The result was that we only got to see a very small area of the park before having to take refuge in the gift shop and ultimately head for home and a nice warming cup of tea.
I know. What a couple of babies!
It all began so promisingly. The sun was shining, and we arrived at the park just in time for lunch.
I don't normally like the food served at places like this, but this Greek mezze board was lovely. We had grilled halloumi, salad, vine leaves, flat bread and dips. We also ordered a side dish of crispy chips, which went down so quickly they were gone before I even thought about photographing them. Sitting outside on a sheltered balcony, we were just about warm enough, and I thoroughly enjoyed sipping my hot chocolate and gazing out at the view. (Yes, I sometimes have hot chocolate with savoury food. Please comment below if other people do this or if it's just weird. I need to know.)
Once we had finished eating, we ventured out into the open. This place really is beautiful to look at. Developed in the grounds of the Bretton Estate, which has been in existence for centuries, the Sculpture Park was established in 1977 and continues to develop, with different artists contributing pieces all the time. Many of these are huge, strange-looking things, all unexpected angles and curves. To see them set amongst this vast landscape (much of it man-made, but designed to look as natural as possible) makes them even more striking than they would be in a museum or gallery.
Spot which of the above is not actually a sculpture!
My favourite piece (of the few we managed to see) was this Iron Tree in the grounds of the Chapel. It's by Ai Weiwei and is made from many parts of different trees that have been cast in iron and joined together. As the iron rusts over time, it is always subtly changing, like a real tree. I loved it.
As well as not being warm enough, my outfit was very simple. I've featured this pink coat on the blog before, and I'm amazed how much wear I've got out of it. I've removed the fur collar to make it more spring-like, and added jeans, plimsolls and a white jumper.
Coat - Zara, Jeans - Topshop, Jumper, plimsolls and bag - H&M
I definitely want to go back to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park sometime soon. Preferably when it's warm! Has anybody been? And do you like places like this in general?