INSPIRED by art in stunning surroundings?

You can combine the enjoyment of both during an excursion to the stately surroundings of Castle Howard near York.

Always a pleasurable place to visit, this grandiose abode, home to generations of the Howard family, is set in beautiful and tranquil surroundings near the historic city of York.

A popular destination for visitors, Castle Howard is currently showcasing work by internationally-renowned artist, Mat Collishaw, in its Courtyard Gallery.

The gallery, one of several rooms brought back into use for the 2018 season, is the location for Mat's 'The Centrifugal Soul' which runs until September.

Interestingly, the showcase features technology which was the precursor to modern film-making. No stranger to the small screen, Castle Howard has appeared in many TV programmes - the most recent being Victoria.

The eight-episode ITV series follows the early life of Queen Victoria from her accession to the throne aged 18 to her courtship and marriage to Prince Albert.

Castle Howard also appeared in Brideshead Revisited, The Buccaneers, a BBC production of Edith Wharton's novel of the 19th century encounter between English aristocracy and wealthy American heiresses as well as documentaries giving viewers a behind-the-scenes peek into the operation behind this stunning estate.

The centrepiece of Mat's work is the titular zoetrope sculpture he developed producing the illusion of motion through rapid rotation and stroboscopic light animating scenes of bowerbirds and birds of paradise performing elaborate mating rituals.

Mat, whose career began exhibiting 'Bullet Hole' at the legendary Freeze show in 1988, developed the sculpture through his work with evolutionary psychologist, Geoffrey Miller who believes the origins of art stem from natural instincts of courtship and evolution.

As well as exhibiting at Castle Howard, Matt, whose work focuses on sculpture, photography, film and installation, is currently showcasing his virtual reality artwork 'Thresholds' as part of an exhibition at the National Science and Media Museum in Bradford.

The Courtyard Gallery adds a new dimension for the many visitors who come to explore Castle Howard.

And there is certainly plenty of scope for exploration! Embraced by breathtaking landscape and beautiful countryside, Castle Howard is the ideal destination for those wanting to take time to saunter and savour the surroundings, or for families wanting to explore and play climb aboard the land train and head for the playground by the lake offering fun-filled adventure for young ones to release some energy. While there, you can also refresh and unwind in the Boathouse cafe or savour an icecream treat from the kiosk.

A refreshment pitstop is highly recommended as, with 1,000 acres to explore, you can imagine that pathways are plentiful within this rambling landscape boasting temples, lakes and fountains.

Renowned for its seasonal displays of daffodils, rhododendrons, bluebells and roses, Castle Howard is a gardeners' paradise for those seeking green-fingered inspiration, and is testimony to the hard work that goes in to maintaining the beautiful landscape within and beyond inhabited by a myriad of wonderful wildlife.

Whether you want to explore the scenery, or the beautiful abode, Castle Howard has something for everyone.

It also boasts a packed programme of events including a May Day fete and performances by the New Orleans inspired New York Brass Band from Saturday May 5 to Monday May 7 and a classic car show on Sunday June 17.

From June 28 to July 1 Castle Howard's annual Flower Festival gets underway bringing the wild outdoors into the house.

And if you fancy a treat, then Seasonal Afternoon Tea is being served. Following on from last year's Afternoon Tea launch, Castle Howard is hosting a series of special celebratory menus using the freshest local seasonal produce and served in the exclusive setting of the Grecian Hall.

For more information, or to get involved, contact Castle Howard, York, YO60 7DA; visit or call 01653 648333.