‘Refuge – The Stone Garden at Weston’ by Clare Dearnaley is a 20 minute film about the art collector Ronnie Duncan’s love for stone and his philosophy on life and of ‘living through his eyes’. Shot over one year it is led by capturing light passing across the stones, which appears to animate them and by an absorbing conversation with Ronnie. The film gently examines stories; the creation of an environment, the nature of possessions and the reclaiming and reusing of materials. It seeks to capture the possible transience of the Stone Garden as much as the semi-permanence of the stones themselves.
Weston is a 17th century cottage in Otley, North Yorkshire, home to Ronnie Duncan, who has over the last 60 years quietly furnished it with a remarkable collection of paintings and sculptures. This film looks at the stones in the garden; for more on the contents of the house please see the earlier blogpost – More Love Than Money.
There is also a lovely book by Polly Feversham and Diane Howse – Weston, a necessary dream.
Ronnie Duncan has been collecting art for more than 60 years, often supporting artists at early stages in their careers. Much of his collection – including works by Terry Frost, Alan Davie, Roger Hilton and Ian Hamilton Finlay – is displayed around Duncan’s home and garden near Otley. It was here that director Jared Schiller and cameraman Stephen Pook filmed “an evocation of the collector’s home”.
This is an update to an earlier trailer for this film – More Love Than Money.
I recently discovered this lovely film via a recommendation from Kettle’s Yard. It’s a visit to the home of Ronnie Duncan and his art collection at Weston in Otley near Leeds.
The art at Weston – which includes works by the likes of Roger Hilton, Alan Davie, Trevor Bell and Terry Frost – ‘lives’ there with Ronnie, it is not simply exhibited. Unlike Kettle’s Yard, however, Weston is unlikely to be preserved; the works within will one day be dispersed: donated to public collections across the country, and the cottage will return to the possession of its owner. A generous and sociable man, Ronnie frequently welcomes visitors to Weston to experience the collection first-hand. He asked me to make this film in order that this may continue, in some small way, even when the works are being appreciated anew in smart galleries on freshly painted walls – Jared Schiller.