Aspall Cyder - Cider and Vinegar

An Account of Apples


Date
29th August 2014

Category
Cyder House


The Aspall orchards planted by Clement Chevallier in 1728 are largely unchanged in nearly 300 years - there is a sense of timelessness and strong connection with the past.

It is this sense of place and history that has inspired local Suffolk-based artist  Laura Leahy’s current project. Earlier this year we met Laura to hear about her work and interest in developing a project about apples and the Aspall orchards which she drives past on a regular basis.

It felt like a wonderful fit, and we are really happy that Laura has been visiting the orchards on a weekly basis for six months to see them change through the seasons. 

Laura has spent time in our orchards throughout the summer in order to experience the changes taking place as the fruit develops, the shifts in light, the sounds and colours, and the atmosphere. 

“I am finding the orchards mesmerising, and am fascinated by the interplay of landscape, apples and cider making.”

Spring

 

Summer

The title of her project, ‘An Account of Apples’, is aptly taken from an entry in Clement Chevallier’s journal from 1729.

She has used video, photography and painting, experimenting with different techniques and conditions to capture the present day rural landscape in Suffolk. Her video ‘286 Steps’ was filmed at the 286th step from the main road into the orchard, honouring Aspall’s 286 years of apple growing. She has documented the development of the project  on her blog, ‘Reflective Visual Journal’.

“There is something quintessentially English about the video which captures the silence and restfulness of an English garden yet with the sounds of a summer day. The mowing of the grass in the orchard, quality of light and the particular green reflects Aspall’s rural landscape and its pace. The idea of waiting and watching the natural process of growing apples while activity continues has an understated graceful quality.”

An Account of Apples, an online exhibition, featuring ‘286 Steps’, is available from 25 August to 28 September at  anaccountofapples.co.uk.

“An online exhibition is a perfect place to show this work”, said Leahy. “It is challenging as an artist and a way to connect Suffolk’s contemporary rural landscapes with a wider audience and to push the boundaries of the medium.”