A spanner in the works

Talk | Friday 20 September | 2.30pm | 1 hour

Ben Long, the artist and creator of Dog Scaffolding Sculpture, currently displayed on the South Lawn, and Alex Hodby, the curator of exhibitions and engagement at Chatsworth, discuss the literal and figurative 'spanner' - the way in which Ben uses an assortment of materials and objects, such as scaffolding equipment, haulage trucks, and advertising billboards, to create unexpected artworks; and how operating beyond the confines of a conventional gallery space can pose unpredictable challenges, as well as providing the opportunity to engage with broad audiences.

Ben Long's Dog Scaffolding Sculpture on the South Lawn

More about the speakers

Ben Long

Selected as one of the '100 Sculptors of Tomorrow' and with commissions ranging from Sculpture in the City to Banksy’s Dismaland, Lancastrian artist Ben Long takes public art, shakes it by the neck, and invigorates it with original, new and startling ideas. Having worked in the construction industry before studying at art college, Ben was inspired to create art that simultaneously references art history and working-class experience within an urban context.

Of his Chatsworth exhibition, Long explains, 'Dog Scaffolding Sculpture is intended to convey some of the special attributes of the canine species: loyalty, guidance, protection, fun, play, acceptance, and, most crucially, the capacity for love. And all at a scale that would seem impossible to ignore.'

Alex Hodby

Alex Hodby has worked with art and artists throughout her career. She has worked as a curator for over 15 years, including at Yorkshire Sculpture Park and Museums Sheffield, and has taught about curation at Tate Modern. Her PhD looked at Tate Modern’s Public Programme and the art museum as a public space in democracy. Alex is curator of exhibitions and engagement at Chatsworth.