The North Sketch Sequence - the groundbreaking fusion of art and architecture created by the ceramist Jacob van der Beugal for Chatsworth's North Sketch Gallery - has won the prestigious international CODA award.
Commissioned by the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, the North Sketch Sequence was chosen as winner of the Residential Category in the second year of the CODA awards which saw 366 entries from 32 countries, with 13 winning projects chosen by a 16-strong international jury. The annual CODA awards celebrate the best design projects from around the world that demonstrate the most successful integration of commissioned art in an interior space.
The Duke of Devonshire said: "We are thrilled that Jacob has won this award for his magnificent installation. He’s done something that is extraordinary, right from the genesis in his mind. When he first presented his vision to us, it was inspiring. The end result is absolutely astonishing, and has already been enjoyed by many since it was unveiled in March earlier this year."
The commission can be seen to fit into the trajectory of experimental work introduced by the Duke and Duchess into the house and garden over the past eight years, and is a contemporary interpretation of the tradition to hang family portraits on the walls.
CODA Jury member Ilene Shaw, said: "A quirky, interesting, very original concept that results in an exquisite surface design that is so beautifully quiet and timeless. Absolutely fabulous story!"
Without doubt the most important art installation at Chatsworth since the creation of the Sculpture Gallery in 1832 and the most ambitious permanent ceramic installation ever to be constructed in a Grade 1 listed house, The North Sketch Sequence is an entire 20 metre long gallery covered with textured, handmade ochre coloured ceramic panels. Using samples from the Duke and Duchess, their son Lord Burlington and his wife Lady Burlington, the panels are embedded with a depiction of the Devonshire family's DNA. Aspects of each individual's personality are captured on raised ceramic blocks representing their personal DNA strand in an unusual and creative take on the traditional portrait.
Still only 36 years old Jacob van der Beugel was a pupil of the ceramicist Edmund de Waal and a bold choice for a commission of this importance. A thorough search by ceramics curator and consultant Joanna Bird approached by the Duke of Devonshire led to a six strong shortlist to present to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire and the Chatsworth House Trust.
Upon being awarded the commission, Jacob said: "The commission was a colossal opportunity to put ceramic installation centre stage and to demonstrate its beauty and conceptual power. This was a once in a lifetime chance to create a contemporary space in a unique Grade 1 listed building. It has been immensely challenging, technically demanding, a mental marathon and I would do it again in a heartbeat."