Archive for the ‘willow’ Category

Secret Swans – Frome

Friday, June 17th, 2016

As part of Frome Festival & Frome Open Studios, I have made a large willow and silver birch nest for the Secret Swans trail that runs from 2nd July – 10th July.

This is an exciting trail – 30 artists in 30 different venues (shops, cafes, galleries…) around the town.  The artwork is available for sale by secret auction.

The event celebrates 30 years of  the Black Swan Arts centre in Frome and money raised will go towards essential building repairs needed at Black Swan Arts & the Round Tower.

http://bit.ly/1Xt1Vwk

Martyn Sheppard – photographer

Thursday, May 26th, 2016

Here are some fabulous photographs of my work by Martyn Sheppard

Of Earth & SKy – Somerton

Friday, May 20th, 2016

I am working on new work to be exhibited  alongside Miriam Sheppard’s paintings at  The Courthouse Gallery, Somerton

2nd July – 13th August

http://www.miriamsheppard.co.uk/

http://www.somarton.co.uk/

http://creativesomerset.com/the-courthouse-gallery/

Stop & Stare, exhibition Frome

Friday, May 13th, 2016

I am exhibiting my willow work alongside painters Miriam Sheppard and Ann Warren at The Round Tower, Black Swan Arts in Frome.  The exhibition opened last Saturday and runs until 28th May.

Our works sits very well together and we have received many comments reflecting this.  The Round Tower is a beautiful venue made all the more special by fabulous lunches, cakes and coffee served in the sunny courtyard outside.

Do come and say hello, we are open Monday – Saturday 10-5pm

The birds are nesting

Monday, April 25th, 2016

My willow sculptures when placed outdoors often prove to be attractive to nesting birds, last night I noticed that a wren has recently built its mossy nest in this old willow flower on the east facing end of the shed.

Working with willow

Saturday, April 2nd, 2016

Photographer Heather Edwards, visited to take a series of pictures of me working with willow, the whole set will be published next year in a national magazine, more details to follow…

Arc welding

Friday, March 25th, 2016

At Christmas I was given an arc welder, the tool filled me with both fear and opportunity however it remained in its box until an interesting commission landed in my inbox on 8th January;  “Could I make an 8 foot high willow wine glass?”  Well actually yes I can, what great timing, I kitted up and got practicing with the  welder.

To my surprise another commission came through soon afterwards;  I have a large 2D willow apple (about 3.5m diameter) in the hedge of our orchard on the A37 and a lady wanted a smaller one (1.4m diameter) to put up on a large indoor wall.  A simple metal frame using 6mm steel rod helps this otherwise quite delicate design.

Happy Easter

Saturday, March 19th, 2016

Sustainable sculpture

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

Sculpture in the garden can act either as a focal point or as an element of surprise enlivening an otherwise dull area of wall or a dark shady corner.  Right now during Somerset Arts Weeks you will be able to see many different forms of sculpture: bronze, stone, steel, wood, ceramic and willow…  My medium is willow and other natural materials (silver birch, leaves, field maple, dogwood…), woven into simple forms highlighting the colours and textures of the materials.

Willow is an amazing material, exploited for its pliable stems and ability to regenerate after cutting.   It has been used for thousands of years woven into functional objects such as baskets, fish traps, fences, tracks for roads over boggy ground… It is a truly sustainable material and traditionally most small holdings would have had their own stand of willow for ongoing repair and making of new structures.

My willow sculptures not only do they slowly return to nature in the garden but often birds nest in them during this process.  I harvest my materials in the winter from the garden, local hedgerows and withy beds on a completely sustainable basis.  Sculptures outside will last approximately 2 years however given a bit of shelter (north facing wall or under a lean-to) will last much longer.

Exhibition at Glastonbury Abbey

Thursday, February 12th, 2015

I have been working towards a joint exhibition with Angie Rooke (landscape painter) and Jo Lucksted (ceramics) at Glastonbury Abbey which opens on Saturday.  It is a lovely event and venue – an oasis in the middle of a busy market town.  From the exhibition you can see carpets of snowdrops and crocus and if you venture out into the extensive grounds you might find the Ginkgo biloba from which I collected leaves in the autumn and then experimented with in my studio (the results are on show!).  Do come along, the exhibition runs until 4th May and when the weather warms up there is an outdoor cafe!