Alfredo Jaar: The Garden of Good and Evil at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Sara Jaspan, Exhibitions Editor
Alfredo Jaar - The Garden of Good and Evil
Alfredo Jaar, The Garden of Good and Evil, 2017. Courtesy the artist, New York, a/political and YSP. © Jonty Wilde

Alfredo Jaar: The Garden of Good and Evil at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield 14 October 2017 — 8 April 2018 Entrance is free

From magician, to architect, to one of the world’s most politically engaging artists today, Alfredo Jaar’s major solo exhibition forms a key part of Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s 40th anniversary celebrations. Born in Chile in 1956, Alfredo Jaar is well known for his projects addressing humanitarian trauma and the politics of image-making, responding to extreme inequalities and injustices around the world.

The exhibition is named after a significant new work by Jaar, presented outdoors in YSP’s grounds. Upon first encounter, The Garden of Good and Evil (2017) appears to provide the peaceful embrace of a beautiful grove of trees. Yet, as visitors enter, it becomes apparent that the large cubic planters containing each tree are in fact elegantly fabricated steel cells, designed to reference the confinement boxes used to hold prisoners at the secret detention facilities (or ‘black sites’) operated by the United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) around the world. Some only just large enough to contain a person kneeling.

In the Underground Gallery, a series of Jaar’s most well-known works explore his interest in contemporary image and compassion fatigue. The Sound of Silence (2005) challenges the candour of information sources, image ownership and copyright through the history of a devastating image of a young victim of the 1993 Sudanese famine, taken by photographer Kevin Carter. Elsewhere, Shadows (2014) responds to six images taken by photographer Koen Wessing following the trauma experienced by a family of a farmer murdered during the 1978 Nicaraguan Civil War. While A Hundred Times Nguyen (1994) relates to the shocking conditions faced by the Vietnamese boat people held in ‘refugee detention centres’ in Hong Kong in 1991.

Though the weightiness of these subjects may sound darkly depressing; there’s also an optimism to Jaar’s work. The title of the show alludes to the choice humans have between good or evil. As Alfredo Jaar states: “The world of art and the world of culture is the last remaining space of freedom… I am free to speculate, I am free to dream a better world, and I can only do that in the art world.”

Alfredo Jaar: The Garden of Good and Evil at Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Wakefield 14 October 2017 — 8 April 2018 Entrance is free

Where to go near Alfredo Jaar: The Garden of Good and Evil at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Newmillerdam Country Park
Wakefield
Park
Newmillerdam Country Park

With a central lake and woodland, Newmillerdam Country Park is a haven for wildlife – a welcoming expanse of greenery just outside Wakefield.

Ossett Brewery Taproom
Wakefield
Bar or Pub
Ossett Brewery Taproom

With outdoor seating just 30 minutes drive outside Wakefield, Ossett Brewery specialises in award-winning real ales and has taproom and brewery tours on site.

A Touch of Craft Yorkshire

A Touch of Craft is a fresh, clean and vibrant space to learn new skills, meet new people and have some YOU time! ​
We only started in December 2021 but since then we have had sell out class after sell out class!

Cannon Hall Museum Park & Gardens, Barnsley
Barnsley
Museum
Cannon Hall Museum Park & Gardens

Cannon Hall is a stunning Georgian country house museum with outstanding fine and decorative art collections, set in 70 acres of historic parkland and beautiful landscape gardens. It is the perfect day out for all the family.

Event venue
Cannon Hall Farm

Cannon Hall Farm opened to the public for the first time in 1989. Since that time we have added adventure playgrounds, gift shop, farm shop, two restaurants and an indoor playground.

7A Wakefield Richard Wheater, Neon Workshops (c) Nicholas Singleton
Event venue
7A Wakefield

Wakefield’s 7A is a flexible performance / exhibition space Yorkshire. It is host to a number of impressive events used by Leeds College of Music, Wakefield College and the Neon Workshops.

Sandal Castle
Wakefield
Tourist Attraction
Sandal Castle

The romantic ruins of this medieval castle stand in a commanding position overlooking the Yorkshire countryside.

Holmfield Arms
Wakefield
Hotel
Holmfield Arms

A popular lodge-style hotel set in picturesque parkland with its own restaurant, close to Wakefield city centre.

Neon Workshops
Wakefield
Neon Workshops

One of Wakefield’s coolest companies, book a workshop, visit a temporary exhibition or browse Neon Workshops’ online shop.

Wakefield
Event venue
Venue 23

Venue 23 is an independently run live music venue in Wakefield, which plays host to both local and international talent.

What's on: Exhibitions

Culture Guides