Harrison's Garden

Art installation 'Harrison's Garden'

Nostell looks after one of the first longcase clocks made by the famous inventor, John Harrison. To celebrate the 300th birthday of this ticking treasure we're hosting ‘Harrison’s Garden’, a contemporary art installation of 2,000 clocks...

Enjoy a spectacle for the eyes and ears

Harrison's Garden, inspired by Yorkshire's greatest clockmaker, is open from Saturday 25 March until Sunday 9 July 2017. In the newly opened Muniments Room, you'll find 2,000 clocks and watches arranged by artist Luke Jerram into patterns and shapes. Each one's set to a different time so that you hear a musical delight of ticking, clicking and chiming all through the day. 

Did you have any clocks similar to the ones you see? Do they bring back memories?
Art installation 'Harrison's Garden'
Did you have any clocks similar to the ones you see? Do they bring back memories?

An indoor landscape

Jerram describes his artwork of ticking treasures as an imagined landscape; a garden of clocks.  As Harrison is famous for inventing the marine chronometer, it's fitting that it sounds like trickling water.

" It is a glimpse of a surreal fictional world or perhaps an image from one of John Harrison's dreams. Like a garden, the installation is a living and growing collection of different clock ‘species’."
- Luke Jerram

A garden of memories

500 of the 2,000 timepieces on display at Nostell were donated by members of the public, volunteers and staff. From family favourites that have been handed down generations to childhood clocks that have been gathering dust in the attic, we've been bowled over by the response from our supporters. 

Here's a snapshot of all the clocks donated, just before Luke Jerram transformed them into the artwork you can see today.

One significant donation was a granddaughter clock, given to the installation by a visitor, John whose father was given the 4ft treasure for his 21st birthday in 1935...and it still works!  

The ticking tour

Harrison’s Garden is part of Trust New Art, the National Trust’s contemporary arts programme which invites visitors to experience our places from a different perspective. After it leaves Nostell on Sunday 9 July, Harrison’s Garden will then appear at Castle Drogo in Devon, Gunby Hall in Lincolnshire and Penrhyn Castle in Wales, with each place adding 500 more clocks to the total.

Love contemporary art? Head to the Trust New Art website to see all upcoming installations, exhibitions and events.

Luke Jerram

Luke Jerram’s multidisciplinary practice involves the creation of sculptures, installations and live arts projects. Living in the UK but working internationally for 19 years, Jerram has created a number of extraordinary art projects which have excited and inspired people around the globe. Find out more at www.lukejerram.com 

Harrison’s Garden was originally commissioned by Connect! and presented over 5 days at the Thelma Hulbert Gallery in 2015 with installation of 1,000 clocks.

Luke Jerram surrounded by his garden of clocks
Artist Luke Jerram with his installation, 'Harrison's Garden'.
Luke Jerram surrounded by his garden of clocks