Labour of love come to fruition

Garden of Eden

The last fortnight has been a rather mad whirlwind leading to SAW’s opening, managing both my venues between other day-to-day commitments, testing my sanity.  Miraculously, the Garden of Eden came together on time.  With the support and help of good friends and a few late nights finishing off, I managed to complete my 3  installations at Esotera, set up at Thornreed Studio (venue 94), get to the Abundance micro feast at East Lambrook, do a talk and workshop on the first Saturday and thoroughly enjoy chatting to visitors for the past week.  Thanks to Pauline Watson and team, the Harveys (owners at Esotera) and Hicks & Don (wine sponsors) for their hard work, food and drink contributions to the private view, it was a lovely event.

I asked a photographer (from 35mil) to take some pics of the work.  We re-scheduled 3 times due to poor weather and it was third time lucky when the sun finally broke through after a dull, cold day.  Dappled sunlight heightens the enchantment on the largest piece – lichen-inspired work set in a copse of silver birch trees.  What’s really needed now is more sunshine to do its magic over this last coming weekend to encourage a wider, more abundant audience.

I’ve received many appreciative, insightful comments about the Garden of Eden and yesterday was a particularly good day at Esotera, with a large range of visitors of all ages.   A friend even made a visit from above in a glider.   Grass is starting to grow through my main installation, and although I regularly collect some of the leaves/debri that fall onto the work (especially after high winds last week), they almost enhance it.   The work is settling into the site – perhaps it should remain a permanent feature!   Gengis the cat is enjoying the extra attention and Scruffy – one of the free-roaming chickens – has an odd habit of pecking at visitors’ feet/legs!   Ahh sweet!

I am feeling positive about the whole experience, apart from poor weather at times bringing less visitors (and a few recoiling when faced with the NGS entrance fee).   It has been hard work, challenging, great fun, addictive even – and I think, successful.

Garden of Eden - detail Garden of Eden nestled amongst silver birch trees

Garden of EdenDetail DetailLichen-inspired formsDetail

Garden of Eden

Detail DetailEnclave of lichen-inspired piece with silver birch treesDetailDetailIntrigued free-roaming chickenGarden of EdenGiant Nest   reclaimed copper wires, twine and old light bulbsGiant NestGiant Nest - detail (reclaimed copper wires, twine and old light bulbs)Giant Nest - detailGiant Nest - detail   reclaimed copper wire, twine and light bulbsSerpent and fruitSerpent and fruitSerpent's crown - made from an old shower head, reclaimed copper wire & beads.  Inspired by Bosch's Satan in Garden of Earthly delightsIMG_7476Boy spots snakeWorkshop at EsoteraParticipant's work in progress - workshop at EsoteraNesting pigeon at Esotera - drawing by Fiona whilst manningGengis - rarrScruffy pecking

Progress

Not there yet, but here are a few photos of my progress over the past few weeks.  I think the correct term is ‘hoarder’… my garden’s been taken over and going a bit wild, but the good news is I have enough scrap steel now!  I would still love to acquire some more copper – especially in sheet or bowl form – if anybody can help?   Will soon be embarking on using my new plasma cutter, which should make the job much easier.  There’s still lots to do.  The real art will be to bring it all together successfully…

Pile of scrap steelWorking out the scale for EsoteraScrap steel ready for cutting Ready for cuttingBeautiful rustGrowing collection of lichenTriffid/lichen