The Once and Future King

The Once and Future King

Security wire

Meadow Arts commission, 2008

Attingham Park’s great walled garden once provided food to support an extended household of hundreds of people. For many decades, this kitchen garden stood as an empty, unproductive space while fossil fuel, industrial agriculture, and supermarkets dominated global food production. It is now being put back into production through a volunteer led National Trust initiative. In the garden, Cornford & Cross have focused attention on the site of an old well, which has since been the subject of an exploratory archaeological dig. Over the well, Cornford & Cross have positioned a distorted globe of security wire. The galvanized ‘tangle wire’ that forms the surface of the globe was specially developed by a local firm to safely keep protestors out of the grounds of the Gleneagles Hotel during the 2005 G8 summit. Beneath the surface, the structure of the globe is a lethal bundle of stainless steel razor wire. With The Once and Future King, Cornford + Cross suggest this fertile ground could become vital and contested territory as a result of impending shortages and scarcity of food and water.

Cornford & Cross

Matthew Cornford and David Cross have worked together since meeting at St Martins School of Art in 1987. Since that time they have created a unique body of work made both in the public realm and for galleries. In the main, their way of working has been to respond to a particular context or situation, by examining the problems that arise out of it. Accordingly, each of their projects has been radically different, not only in form but in function. Equally, the artists have not worked in a single media, but produced sculpture and installations, worked with video and photography, and created one-off events and sound works. Cornford + Cross have recently exhibited at Milton Keynes Gallery, Wolverhampton Art Gallery as well as in Italy and Belgium and the USA.