‘Behind the Lines’ – the launch

The launch of Naseem Darbey’s new exhibition

I went along to the opening of Naseem Darbey‘s new exhibition,“Behind the Lines”, at Cliffe Castle, today. What a stunning display.

As we went in we were treated to pink lemonade and gourmet cup cakes – I, for one, was put in a very good mood. Naseem’s works were a triumph of imagination and amazingly intricate stitching. The sculptures were presented in a way that gave them an ethereal, almost ghostly feel. They seemed to hang in mid air, threads drifting from each creating the impression that they were melting before your eyes. The way each piece was lit enhanced this ghostly sensation.

The centrepiece is a dramatic heart sculpture with a nail driven through it, the threads arranged as though the heart is bleeding, the whole piece dripping in red light. It represents the feelings of the subject of the exhibition, Mary Louise Roosevelt Burke Butterfield, nominally the mistress of Cliffe Castle, when she wrote to her husband,

I implore you to make me truly happy – at least write to me if your heart is not nailed to Cliffe Hall, and, as a result is dry and silent.

The exhibition is at Cliffe Castle until 26 June 2011 and then goes on the road, heading first to Durham.

Naseem Darbey’s website


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