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Edward Chell’s Soft Estate – Spectral Depictions of a World Unto Itself: Revisiting 18/26

Edward Chell’s painting of the verges and landscapes that run alongside Britain’s roads have long been something of a favourite of mine and each time I return to them I still find myself entranced.

They are part of a project by Edward Chell called Soft Estate which has included an exhibition and accompanying book. Soft Estate is the name given by the UK Highways Agency to describe:

“The natural habitats that have evolved along the edges of motorways and trunk roads and which offer a refuge for wildlife and a modern form of wilderness…” (Quoted from an article on  Soft Estate at the site.)

The above paintings from the project contain and intertwine a very evocative almost ghostly mixture of the natural world, modernism and the beauty and at times delicate character of nature and they seem to depict the often overlooked edgelands that run alongside the nation’s roads as a thriving world unto themselves.


The original post published during the first year of A Year In The Country:


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