The Ornamental Wilderness in the English Garden
Sat 22 April 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm BST
This talk is organised by Avon Gardens Trust: please click on Book Tickets for more information and booking.
While today we may think of a wilderness as a wild place unspoiled by human intervention, in the 17th and 18th centuries a garden wilderness referred to a highly cultivated part of the formal garden, a place bounded by trees or tall hedges with paths to walk on and with occasional cultural delights within—statues or fountains or a summer house in the classical style. In its mature form, the wilderness constituted most of the garden and the setting in which all other features were placed. The wilderness was shady and private, a place for solitary retreat as well as social activity, an ‘artinatural’ space in which artifice and culture combined with nature. This illustrated talk examines the history and development of the English garden wilderness and takes a new look at this period of garden history through the perspective of the wilderness garden.
James Bartos was awarded a PhD in Garden History from the University of Bristol in 2014. He has published in the journals Garden History and Die Gartenkunst. From 2015 to 2020 he was Chairman of the Gardens Trust, a national charity devoted to the conservation of historic parks and gardens in England. Over the past twenty-five years he has created a new garden in Dorset