On a beautiful Monday evening at Hatfield House, I watched as a new large-scale sculpture was unveiled to an assembled crowd of excited guests.

Created by renowned British sculptor Angela Conner, Renaissance is the latest addition to the grounds of the historic home and it makes for an impressive presence at the public entrance of its north façade.

With the last rays of daylight glinting off the eight-metre long stainless steel arms of the sculpture, a mist of steam rose from the pool of water beneath.

Then the whole creation gently turned, gracefully mirroring natural forces such as wind and gravity.

The arms, which have water cascading down their length, slowly rose and fell, while a golden orb made from resin in the centre of the pool gradually sank underwater like the setting sun.

“I like using natural forces, because I think as a civilisation we are all becoming more and more aware that it is far beyond the daffodils and the tweeting birds, that the forces of nature go beyond – there is a whole universe out there,” muses Angela, who has more than 40 years experience making public sculptures.

“The forces of nature are the things we should most attend to, in some cases be moved by, and in some ways be terrified of.”

Commissioned by the seventh Marquess of Salisbury, Renaissance is the second piece Angela has created for the family who live at Hatfield House.

“It has meant a great deal to me emotionally as a piece,” says Angela, who lives in Hereford.

“It is like a birth, rising up from the water. I feel this couple are having a Renaissance for the whole of Hatfield.”

The Marquess of Salisbury, Robert Gascoyne-Cecil, says: “We haven’t had anything as contemporary as this at this house since it was built. I hope you will agree with me that the old and the new go together when the quality of both are up to scratch.”

A self-taught artist, Angela has sculpted since she was a child using whatever materials came her way.

She developed her artistic ability working in Dame Barbara Hepworth’s celebrated Cornwall studio as a young woman.

Her sculptures now feature in collections around the world and she has exhibited at the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Royal Academy of the Arts. Her 35-metre tall sculpture Irish Wave, is the tallest in Europe.

Hatfield House, Hatfield, open Wednesday to Sunday, 11am to 4.30pm. Details: 01707 287010, hatfield-house.co.uk