White Ashes Fell presents photographs made by Stuart Whipps in Xilitla, Mexico in 2012. These photographs depict the surrealist sculpture garden of Las Pozas, a collection of 36 large concrete structures with titles such as The House with Three Stories That Could Be Five, and The Temple of The Ducks. Las Pozas was built by the English patron and poet Edward James between 1962 and 1979. These images are accompanied by photographs of the wooden moulds that were used to cast James’ structures. The title comes from a story told to George Melly and published in ‘Swans Reflecting Elephants’:
The building occurred only after the first 20 years here. For the first 20 years I was only interested in horticulture and then suddenly, in 62 there was a snowfall. Nobody had seen snow before, they didn’t know what it was. When I got back from New York a month later they said Don Edwardo, for 3 days white ashes fell and burnt everything so then I decided I would do something that couldn’t be killed by freak weather so I began building only then, things that look like trees and plants and flowers. Things that could not be killed by snow.
The making of these photographs was generously supported by Wysing Arts Centre.