‘Let’s keep it amazing’ is the request from Eden Rivers Trust in a partnership exhibition this summer at Tullie House Art Gallery and Museum. Eden Rivers Wonder World is an ambitious exploration of the places and creatures that make the Eden rivers so – amazing!
Interactive displays, photographic walls and models, including a kinetic heron, are your guide along the meandering mighty rivers of the Eden. Stopping to take in a view, a secret place or to look more closely at one of the many creatures that call the river home, you are taken on an awe-inspiring exploration of the Eden catchment.
Creative displays put the rivers’ ‘amazing’ creatures under scrutiny to see just what super powers they have developed to survive in this watery environment. From the tiny Cased caddis with its master building skills to the whopping wild Artic salmon: the biggest ever caught in the Eden weighed over 55lbs. We are also introduced to the illusive Kingfisher who uses an amazing trick of the light to make its feathers shine a brilliant blue; the Grey Heron with its amazing neck that strikes at lightning speed; the super-sucker Lamprey whose unsociable habits are described in graphic detail; the native White-clawed Crayfish whose super healing powers enable it to regrow lost limbs and the amazing underwater hunting machine – the Otter – one of Britain’s best-loved and cherished wild animals.
With such magic in the air, there’s little surprise that the Eden catchment has inspired nature lovers, artists, walkers, climbers, tourists, engineers, architects and eccentrics for hundreds of years. The River Eden’s 80-mile journey from source to sea steers a path through dramatic and stirring landscapes, passing wondrous natural features like Rutter Force, just one of the catchment’s spectacular waterfalls, as well as man-made marvels such as Smardale Gill Viaduct, ancient castles that have witnessed Eden’s turbulent history and more contemporary structures, such as Water Cut, by artist Mary Bourne, on Lady Anne Clifford’s way. All their stories are told in Eden Rivers Wonder World.
But there is a cautionary tale here too – Beware the Litter Monster – a huge sculpture made from litter collected by school children. The result of a creative commission by Eden Rivers Trust with artist, Ro Thomas (Woodmatters) in collaboration with creative partners Josh Simpson (RagTag Arts) and Janine Bebbington (Gorgeous Media) the Litter Monster shows just what can happen if we let our inner monster free to put our Wonder World at peril.
Tullie House Head of Programming and Projects, Amy Walker said, ‘we are delighted to be working with the Eden Rivers Trust on this major exhibition. We hope that this introduction to the River Eden will encourage visitor to go and explore and get creative – and discover Cumbria’s very own Eden’
Eden’s Rivers Trust Chief Executive Officer, Elizabeth Radford said ‘We are so excited to be working with Tullie House to create this exhibition which forms a major part of our five year Cherish Eden programme, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Cherish Eden connects people with the river through inspirational and innovative conservation, volunteering, school and community projects. It’s wonderful that two of these community projects play an important role in the exhibition and will inspire people to help look after this special area.’
Eden Rivers Wonder World introduces children to some complex ideas through creative engaging activities. There is a full programme of events and summer holiday fun, listed at www.tulliehouse.org.uk