Lost Waltz

In 1869, Josephine Bowes laid the foundation stone of the grand house destined to be both a home for her and her husband John, and a place for them to house the large collection of artworks they intended to share with the people of Teesdale, County Durham.

Sadly, the Bowes never lived to see the accomplishment of their project. The Bowes Museum was still opened to the public on 10th June 1892, but some areas of the building remained incomplete. Josephine’s ballroom never saw the grand parties it was intended for. Over the years, its bare plaster walls saw the caretakers’ children play and grow, before being annexed as a temporary storage space for the collection.

In 2008, the neglected roof was restored and works began to turn the ballroom into a new archive for paintings, prints and books, with neatly designed new floor levels and a warren of dedicated spaces, cleverly designed to sit within the unusual, original building structure.

These images are of a space in transition; an unfulfilled dream about to find new life, but tinged with the stillness and sadness of what might have once been.

Richard Glynn began work on Lost Waltz in 2008, and an extract was included in ‘Sight Unseen‘, the 2009 University of Sunderland MA Photography Degree show at Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art. The complete work was shown for the first time at the 2012 edition of Brighton Photo Fringe, as an open air solo exhibition co-curated by Wideyed and Human Endeavour.