An aristocrat with royal links has hailed an exhibition at his manor house as one of the most successful ever held there. 

Lord David Cholmondeley, owner of Houghton Hall, between Fakenham and King’s Lynn, said the exhibition by Sean Scully called Smaller Than The Sky had been one of the most-visited since the Houghton Arts Foundation launched its programme in 2013.

Lord Cholmondeley, 63, said: “Sean Scully’s sculptures, paintings and drawings are in perfect concord with the architecture and landscape of Houghton.  

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Fakenham & Wells Times: Sean Scully, whose works are on display at Houghton Hall.Sean Scully, whose works are on display at Houghton Hall. (Image: National Trust)“Having long admired Sean’s work, it is extremely gratifying that so many visitors from abroad as well as within the UK have travelled to Norfolk for the exhibition.  

“I am looking forward to seeing the sculptures set against the changing of the season before we have to close on October 29.”

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Mr Scully’s works are on display inside Houghton Hall itself as well as in its grounds. 

He said of the exhibition, which focuses on the environment: “England, as we’ve seen from the fabulous paintings by Constable, is a country very informed by sky. 

“People talk about the sky all the time. They talk about the weather, or the clouds, the wet. 

“So, it’s a source of inspiration. 

Fakenham & Wells Times: One of Sean Scully's works, called Crate of Air 2018, on display at Houghton Hall One of Sean Scully's works, called Crate of Air 2018, on display at Houghton Hall (Image: Peter Huggins)“When you put sculptures outside, you are aware that the sky is illuminating them, and conditioning how they look. Whatever you put out there is always humbled by the bigness of the sky.”

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The exhibition follows previous shows at Houghton by big-name artists including James Turrell, Richard Long, Damien Hirst, Henry Moore, Anish Kapoor, Tony Cragg and Chris Levine.

Lord Cholmondeley served as Lord Great Chamberlain from 1990 to 2022 during the reign of Elizabeth II.

In March 2023, he was appointed a permanent lord-in-waiting to the King.