On 6 September 2019, Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire was awarded First Prize: Special Award of the Schloss Dyck Foundation, Centre for Garden Art and Landscape Design, belonging to the European Garden Heritage Network. This year’s focus of the Special Award is on Audience development for historical parks and gardens. Here the achievements of Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire serve as a best practice example across Europe. The European Garden Heritage Network EGHN with its partners in 14 European countries (France, UK, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Ireland, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Spain, and Russia) started the European Garden Award in 2010. The European Garden Award does not solely focus on spectacular garden art or traditional highlights, such as well-maintained herbaceous borders.
Nominations are based on innovative implementation and management, on urban development aspects, on sustainability, on good visitor services or voluntary work as well as on the high quality of restoration or modern design of a park or garden. The winners are sought after as inspirational and as models for other projects. Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire thus cements its international standing and role as a testing ground for garden art. It received acclaim not only for its International Garden Festival but also for the overall experience of its historical heritage, Art Season and its gardens. This year the Domaine proposes some new events like ‘When flowers are an art form’ and ‘Les botaniques’. Far from being a secondary art, floral art, by the very nature of the material used by the artists to devise their pieces, by the fragility of the flowers and their temporary nature, as well as the diversity in shapes and colors, is probably one of the most difficult and subtle arts. For three days (20, 21 and 22 September), as part of the “When flowers are an art form” event, Chateau of Chaumontsur- Loire provided floral designers, of a wide range of ages and cultural backgrounds, with the permanence of its history, walls, and scenery for them to design spectacular yet temporary plant artworks. Then the first edition of the Botanicals of Chaumont-sur-Loire, a weekend of meetings around botany and sale of nursery producers and collectors will mark one of these new highlights, on October 12th and 13th, 2019.