Wearable art inspired by trailblazing industrial heritage on show in new exhibition at North York Moors National Park gallery

The Inspired by… gallery near Danby is about to  unveil a unique series of textile art inspired by the North York Moors’ industrial past.

By Sue Wilkinson
Wednesday, 19th August 2020, 12:27 pm
Updated Wednesday, 19th August 2020, 12:30 pm
Land of Iron at North York Moors Centre at Danby
Land of Iron at North York Moors Centre at Danby

More than 150 years ago, the valleys and hills of North York Moors were filled with fire, smoke and noise as a short but intense period of ironstone mining and railway construction ripped through the land.

Now, thanks to a group of artisans called Cleveland Fibre Arts, the story of the Land of Iron will be reimagined through pieces such as rust-dyed garments, felting, patchwork and plenty more. It will also explore how nature has reclaimed these spaces through work that reflects setting, texture, shape and form.

Tom Mutton, Land of Iron programme manager for the North York Moors National Park Authority, said: “This will no doubt be a thought-provoking exhibition illustrating the connectivity of our cultural heritage from a passionate group dedicated to keeping the historic knowledge of spinning, weaving, dyeing and embroidery alive.

“For the last four years, the Land of Iron project has recorded, conserved and protected some of the most iconic industrial structures that remain, helped nurture local wildlife, and ensured this important part of our history is not forgotten.

“We are delighted that this exhibition will shed new light on our work, which has been generously supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the National Park Authority, David Ross Foundation, and other partners.”

Entry to the exhibition is free and will be running from Saturday September 5 to Monday October 5. Ten mannequins will be on display, all showcasing wearable art crafted by members of the group. There will also be a range of other textile creations including a historically-inspired family of miners.

At the same time, another exhibition from a group of selected artists will showcase a collection of railway poster-style artworks once again inspired by the Land of Iron project.

The gallery will be open from 10am to 5pm daily and all visitors are required to wear a mask in the gallery and throughout the National Park Centre in line with latest Government guidelines. The National Park Centre has received VisitEngland's 'We're Good To Go' kitemark, an accreditation that shows all facilities are following the latest Government and industry Covid-19 safety guidelines.

The ‘wearable art’ exhibition is part of the £4 million Land of Iron project which thanks to players of the National Lottery is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund to showcase how the National Park’s remarkable landscape has been shaped over time by nature, climate, industry and people.