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Sunday, 30 March 2014

Super cool hipster archives

Since I started this blog, all those double digit weeks ago, I have been plagued by the same question.
'But Eliza, where are the Waddesdon archives?'
It seems that people are obsessed with archives, and are desperate to understand the storage capabilities of institutions like Waddesdon for maintaining them.

I'd put that in my archive

You could say that archives are the new short film making. Ask any wickedly dressed Berlin-loving youth what they do in their spare time and you can bet that their answer will either be going to archives or maintaining some sort of archive themselves.

‘I got your snapchat, mate, but why were you up at 3am’

‘Got into some crazy archiving and just couldn’t stop’

(sample conversation)

In light of this, last week I paid a fleeting visit to the Waddesdon Archives, ‘Windmill Hill’, where the architect Stephen Marshall was dropping in for a cup of tea and a natter with the guides.
The atmosphere was (obviously) electric.


Open by appointment and for the odd concert, this incredible building, erupting out of architecture predating the Manor itself, is full of bolshy pieces of modern art. Angus Fairhurst’s A Couple of Differences Between Thinking & Feeling (2000) quite literally ape those that are using the reading room, as they sit seductively lit by Fernando Campana’s Broken Dreams lights (2010).Personally, I like to play a quick game of spot the Kapoor.

See it? See it?

Outside are slated rolling hills designed by Richard Long, and a pair of umbrellas by Michael Craig-Martin (2011), that mock the British weather with their false promise of protection.

Spot the gardener is another classic Windmill Hill game

Of course, we fitted in a few games of ‘Art Historians sitting on chairs’ whilst we were there, before badgering Stephen for more information on his design. He was charming, it was charming, and hopefully we were charming. What a National Trust afternoon….

Spot the Kapoor round 2

Catch you on the flip side!

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