The seventh work in the current phase of The Seven Wonders focuses on the ‘stone edge’ that marks the border between Derbyshire and Sheffield: Stanage. Artist Paul Evans and Derbyshire Poet Laureate Helen Mort respond to this gritstone escarpment with a poem that references one of the climbing routes to be found on the steep buttress, and a painting that evokes the uncommon ground encountered at the end of the climb. Click here to view the poem and the painting. This is the first stage in an ongoing collaboration between Evans and Mort, informed by a series of visits to and conversations about Stanage Edge; click on the ‘Play’ button below to listen to an edited discussion about the collaboration (recorded in Evans’ Sheffield studio on 23 October 2013). Further work will be posted here in the coming months.
For the latest collaboration in the Seven Wonders series, artist Paul Evans and poet Mark Goodwin travel to Alport Castles, a landslip feature in the Peak District, Derbyshire. The gritstone debris from this landslide towers over the valley for over half a mile; from a distance, the protruding mounds resemble castles. The instability of the site is reflected in Goodwin’s poem, which is also a response to Evans’ painting; you can view the poem and the painting here (for an enlarged view of the poem, click on the link to the PDF at the bottom of the page).
We’ve also uploaded a new recording of Alistair Noon‘s Seven Wonders poem ‘The Burbage Valley’ (the text of which can be viewed here, alongside the first of Paul Evans’ six drawings of Burbage). You can listen to the recording below:
Further work from the Seven Wonders series will appear in 2014, including a new collaboration between Evans and the Derbyshire poet laureate Helen Mort.
The fifth (and final) work to develop from this year’s Seven Wonders collaborations revisits the site(s) of a notable physical and cultural landmark of the Peak District: Kinder Scout. The Downfall (revisited) comprises two new paintings by Paul Evans and two excerpts from a new work by Peter Riley (The Ascent of Kinder Scout), marking 80 years since the mass trespass that eventually led to the ‘right to roam’ being legislated in the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000.
Kinder Downfall is the tallest waterfall in the Peak District, with a fall of 30 metres. The waterfall was formerly known as Kinder Scut, and it is from this that the Kinder plateau derives its name. You can read Peter Riley’s texts and view Paul Evans’ paintings here.
In a departure from the practices that shaped earlier collaborations in this series, Paul Evans has created a sequence of six drawings in response to a new poem by Alistair Noon; the poem and drawings trace a route through the valley towards ‘the developing relicts’.
You can read the poem and view the first of these drawings here. A short film comprising all six drawings, the poem and a soundtrack by Brian Lewis can be viewed here (for optimum resolution) or via the small-screen embedded link below:
For the third collaboration in The Seven Wonders (2012), we return to Peak Cavern in Castleton, Derbyshire, which is the subject of a new poem by Angelina Ayers and a new painting by Paul Evans. You can view the painting and the poem here. Listen to Angelina Ayers reading ‘Peak Cavern’ (on location in Sheffield) here.
We’ve also uploaded a transcript of a recent artist’s talk given by Evans (as part of the ‘Longbarrow Press: Scale’ exhibition at Sheffield’s Bloc Projects), in which he discusses his recent Seven Wonders collaborations with Angelina Ayers and Fay Musselwhite; you can read the transcript here. The fourth new work in the current phase of The Seven Wonders will take the form of a poem by Alistair Noon and a series of drawings by Paul Evans that move through The Burbage Valley; their collaboration will appear on this site in mid-November.
Our new ‘Essays’ page will showcase articles and discussions relating to the Seven Wonders collaborations. The current featured essay is ‘Graffiti’ by Angelina Ayers; click here to read her reflections on Paul Evans and Fay Musselwhite’s collaboration on ‘Kinder Downfall’ / ‘Phlegmatic’ and Sheffield’s Park Hill regeneration.
We are delighted to announce that Angelina Ayers has joined the Seven Wonders project; the results of her collaboration with Paul Evans will appear here later in the year. Click here to listen to a recent conversation between Ayers and Evans; a wide-ranging discussion that takes in landscape, ekphrasis, Aristotelian poetics and praxis.
Phase 2 of The Seven Wonders continues with a double vision of Hen Cloud (part of a gritstone escarpment above the Leek and Tittesworth Reservoir): a new poem by Mark Goodwin (‘Hen Prayer’) is paired with a new painting by Paul Evans. You can view the painting and the poem here. Listen to Mark Goodwin reading ‘Hen Prayer’ (on location in Peak moorland) here.
We are delighted to welcome Fay Musselwhite and Berlin-based poet Alistair Noon to the Seven Wonders project. Between June and October we will be publishing new collaborative works consisting of poems juxtaposed with paintings and drawings. These will be inspired by our original list of seven wonders, augmented by two new wonders that we have recently identified as essential to a robust, contemporary appreciation of this extraordinary landscape. Phase 2 of The Seven Wonders begins with a reimagining of Kinder Downfall, in which Fay Musselwhite’s poem ‘Phlegmatic’ is paired with a new painting by Paul Evans. You can view the painting and the poem here.
We very much welcome your comments on this new list of nine wonders:
Alport Castles, The Burbage Valley, Chee Dale, Hen Cloud, Kinder Downfall, Mam Tor, Peak Cavern, Stanage and Thor’s Cave.
The Seven Wonders is an ongoing series of collaborative works based on seven spectacular landmarks from the Derbyshire Peak District. Comprising a series of drawings and paintings created by the artist Paul Evans – accompanied by poems by James Caruth, Matthew Clegg, Mark Goodwin, Rob Hindle, Chris Jones, Fay Musselwhite and Alistair Noon – this series resurrects a poetic theme revisited a number of times throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, most famously by Thomas Hobbes in De Mirabilibus Pecci: Being the Wonders of the Peak in Darbyshire, published in 1636.
The Seven Wonders paintings are now available to purchase in a series of signed, limited edition artist’s prints – please visit our online shop for details. The Great Humilities, a boxed edition comprising twelve prints from The Seven Wonders and Cells paintings (Evans’ 2007 collaboration with Chris Jones) and twelve poems by Caruth, Clegg, Goodwin, Hindle and Jones is also currently available to purchase from our online shop. The box has been produced in a strictly limited (signed and numbered) edition of 10 and is priced at £59 (plus P&P).
Paul Evans is a contemporary artist whose practice encompasses a number of different styles of drawing and painting. His work appears on the following sites: Paul Evans, Origin09, Origin011 and Osteography.
The Seven Wonders was first exhibited at Cupola Contemporary Art, Sheffield, in April 2010. All drawings and paintings on this website have been photographed by Ian Gracey.