TINTAGEL - KING ARTHUR
And now it is inspiring many more because Mappin and Stourton have turned their own castle with its 65 bedrooms into a haven where artists can stay free of charge as “artists in residence” , to tap into the mythological and natural beauty "free from any evaluation or invalidation.”
"In other words," Mappin says, "Artists can stay here for as long as they wish, (at Camelot’s discretion) no conditions imposed. In fact an artist is anyone who says they are one - writer, musician or whatever discipline - who is trying create a high quality of communication. We have had artists in residence from Africa, from Australia, indeed they arrive here from all over the world."
John and Ted, bought the place for and undisclosed sum three years ago.
They believe that the creative force of Camelot is strongly positive and that it is bringing peace to a world which sorely needs it. At the same time they know that the creative force of artists can be enhanced if they are given a chance to be in the right surroundings.
"The energy at Tintagel is unique. It is one of the most naturally beautiful places in the country but it is the mythology clinging to it that makes it a magnet for artists of all sorts and always has done. Tennyson wrote Idylls of the King on the cliffs in front of Camelot Castle. Turner painted here, J B Priestley and A A Milne wrote here and Elgar composed his Second Symphony in Room 103."
Famous sportsmen, film stars and top supermodels have all stayed here and most recently Liam Gallagher brought his whole family as artists in residence to spend New Year's Eve at Camelot Castle with his wife Nicole Appleton of All Saints, while Kate Winslet of Titanic fame bought the cottage just below the hotel - and shares a ghost with them, that of a Victorian engineer who used to look after the hotels' electrical supply.
But Tintagel is just the beginning of a huge project. The Mythological Hotels Group. For John and Ted intend to create Mythological Hotels all over the world and to host “artists in residence” wherever there is a location with strong associated mythology. "Each country has its own myths and these myths are extremely important. They were used to educate people in a pre-literate society. In fact mythology is one of the greatest aphrodisiacs known to man. That is, in the true sense of the word, “aphrodisiac” which means, “that which inspires love”. To inject love through the alignment of mythological vectors and the production of beauty is a very positive undertaking. So our next project will be in Cyprus at the Temple of Aphrodite, another will be at Troy in Turkey, followed by another at Delphi in Greece."
John and Ted are both accomplished and respected artists in their own right. John, a songwriter and composer has just finished an album called "Ripples of Peace" which he created with an ongoing "Ripples of Peace" exhibition of sculpture and paintings by Ted Stourton. "The 500 meter sculpture on the Tintagel headland is made from 20 tonnes of Cornish Granite and is interactive. You listen to the music while “walking the ripples”," says Stourton. Many say that Stourton is becoming one of the greatest living painters in Britain today, and possibly is already the leading proponent of abstract-realism. Over 2400 of his original paintings have ended up in collectors hands the last 24 months alone. His work is immensely popular both in England and the US.
Plans are afoot for “The Ripples of Peace” to be copied and recreated in the Saudi Arabian desert, the planned sculpture is so vast that it will be visible from the moon. Other artists are being invited to copy the Ripples of Peace symbol in many media and Ripples of Peace sculptures are manifesting in all sorts of locations. Huge global interest in the concept, the sculpture and “The Ripples of Peace Album” is emerging. John’s song “Inner Truth” is becoming a tool as a worldwide anthem and guidon (standard) for peace.
But is there not a danger that self-styled "artists" will come flocking to sponge on Camelot’s generosity?
“It is important to understand that the project is not intended to be philanthropic. It is in fact an extremely practical program and essential to the survival of mankind.” Explains Mappin.
“The amount of beauty being produced in the world at any one time has a symbiotic link and in fact exists in direct ratio to the sanity of mankind. If as individuals we do not assist in the production of aesthetics then our world and indeed our own universe declines and dwindles.”
“There is a descending spiral and an ascending spiral of life. People choose which spiral they assist.”
“No-one has taken advantage of us so far, in fact the artists that have stayed here have greatly assisted our expansion as they contribute to the goodwill of Camelot and its word of mouth. The plan is that within five years as we acquire more mythological locations we shall be able to help more than 20,000 artists each year."
“Imagine the delight of someone who comes here from the inner cities in Britain or indeed abroad and taps into what we have here. We believe that artists deserve a chance and that it is up to us as individuals to give them that chance.”
“Imagine how far and to whom their Ripples can reach.”
Castle was said to be the birthplace of the legendary King Arthur who, if
he really existed,
was probably a Romano Celtic chieftain and not the medieval king of the
stories. Beyond is the dramatic Victorian Camelot Castle built in 1899 by
Trevail for the original hotelier a Mr
The Camelot has a
Concert Grand piano - a Straad dating from
1830 used by Noel Coward - in
the Great Hall. John Mappin is songwriter and
composer and has just finished an Album "Ripples of Peace" which is "a
unique type of music,
The Arthurian Bar, was designed and created in red by Patrick Rundle, the previous owner for 47 years, whom John describes as a very creative and very imaginative man, one of the most remarkable men I have ever met.
The fireplace in the Great Hall is surrounded by original Victorian Minton tiles. The Castle has a wealth of oak panelling, sweeping staircases and stone and marble fireplaces.
John has always been fascinated by the stories of King Arthur and the Round Table and as a schoolboy at Winchester he saw the ancient wooden table which hangs in the Law Courts and which is said to be the "original". Now he has had a reproduction made in oak.
King of the Castle. John Mappin and Ted Stourton bought the old King Arthur's Castle Hotel for and undisclosed sum three years ago and has turned it into Camelot, a haven for artists of all descriptions.