Earl of Dalkeith to stage photography exhibition at Boughton House near Kettering

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The Earl of Dalkeith is mounting a photographic exhibition at his family home of Boughton House this summer, celebrating and reimagining the works of naturalist and ornithologist George Edwards (1694 -1774).

Born from the original etchings featured in Edwards’ A Natural History of Uncommon Birds and Gleanings of Natural History, which form part of the Buccleuch collection at Boughton House, new works have been created using photography and digital reassembly techniques.

Entitled To God & To Nature, this is the earl’s first exhibition for Boughton House.

Known as the father of ornithology, Edwards created these two important sets of work over a period of 20 years while librarian of The Royal College of Physicians.

The earl, the Duke of Buccleuch’s son, said: “The exhibition has offered us the opportunity to not only exhibit the wonderful work of George Edwards more than two centuries on from their creation, but to also showcase a fresh and personal perspective from my time with these books.”

“It has been a fascinating process. To discover that John 2nd Duke of Montagu had acted as a sponsor of the works, along with the inclusion of one of his birds, The Demoiselle of Numidia, was a lovely insight into the life of my ancestor. The 22 works create fantastical recompositions, amalgamating a number of the etchings and the series has been a joy to create.”

To God & To Nature will open to the public during the House’s summer opening season throughout August, with Edwards’ original volumes on display in the House’s Great Hall and the Earl’s modern reinterpretations displayed in the adjoining Coach House. Prints will also be on sale in the House’s stable block Gift Shop.

The exhibition will run alongside A Passion for Opera: The Duchess and the Georgian Stage, an exhibition in partnership with the Department of Music at the University of Southampton and the Royal College of Music, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).

Elizabeth Montagu, 3rd Duchess of Buccleuch and Queensberry (1743-1827), will be the focus of this display, set to explore the intense world of Georgian operatic culture and music-making through the Duchess’ legacy.

During the August opening, House tours will begin at 1pm, with the last tour at 3.30pm daily.

The Great Hall Tour, plus entry to the Gardens, Armoury and special exhibitions costs £10 for adults, £8 for children and £30 for families (two adults and two children). Children under five go free. The State Rooms tour is available for an extra £2.00 per person, while the Books, Beds and Beyond Tour is an additional £10 per person.

The gardens will open throughout August between midday and 5pm, with last entry at 4pm. Tickets cost £6 for adults, £3 for children and £14 for families (two adults and two children). As an added bonus, gardens ticket holders will also gain access to the armoury and the special exhibitions. Groups are welcome to visit by prior arrangement throughout the year.

To find out more, contact Boughton House on 01536 515 731 or email info@boughtonhouse.co.uk.

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