People / Artist in Residence

Severn Beach Sculptures – Explain Yourself

  • explain
    Explaining Ballroom dancing to the estuary. photo: Michal Iwanowski
  • explain
    Explaining ourselves to the estuary using the common element of water. photo: Michal Iwanowski
  • Sculpture unveiling by Deborah Aguirre Jones, A Forgotten Landscape, Severn Beach. Local community procession with The Ambling Band.

Residents, volunteers and art groups met with Deborah Aguirre Jones, A Forgotten Landscape’s artist in residence to consider an impossible question:

How would you go about explaining yourself or the human world to this landscape?

After hours of conversations, diagrams, cups of tea and experiments, a series of mini-artworks and performances were carried out. (To view them click here.)

From each of these, Deborah drew a single image to be carved in stone, and wrote a description of what happened. Altogether there were 20 drawings, of which three were chosen in a public vote to be made into stone sculptures.

At the Severn Festival in 2017, members of the public voted on which locations they would prefer for the sculptures.

Once the results were in, Deborah, and volunteer Caroline Stealey, made a clay/plasticine maquette (a sculptor’s small preliminary model) for each chosen drawing. Deborah and stonemason Barry went to some limestone quarries in Portland, Dorset, to choose three suitable stones for carving.

After initial roughing out, the pieces of stone were carved by Deborah and Caroline, guided by their maquettes.

Watch the slide show below to see photographs of the process.

The three new sculptures were unveiled in June 2018 with a fantastic event attended by residents of Severn Beach, who created colourful flags and fire sculptures for a procession accompanied by the Ambling Band.


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