Eerie but beautiful

by Liz Calvert

I remember being completely blown away when I first saw the poppies at the Tower of London back in the summer of 2014. I wasn’t lucky enough to actually visit but the images on TV and in the papers were stunning. The impact of the poppies cascading around the Tower like a bloodbath was truly mesmerising – if not slightly haunting.

The concept of creating 888,246 ceramic poppies to represent each soldier who had died during the First World War was brilliant and then to sell them so that charities supporting the armed forces benefited was the icing on the cake.

  • Exactly a year later and I was once again enthralled with a sculpture. On this occasion, we were having a Thompson away day and the venue was the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. It’s not a place I have visited often (which in itself is shocking as I practically live on the doorstep) but on this occasion we had the pleasure of viewing some pieces with a very knowledgeable tour guide.

    The Bonnet by Ursula Von Rydingsvard was interesting but what really caught my eye – and captured my imagination – was the Crawling Lady Hare by Sophie Ryder. Standing at 3.66m high by 5.5m long, what I originally thought was a slightly creepy sculpture – a human body with a hare’s head – I now see as quite magical. You see, until our tour guide pointed it out, I had never noticed the intricate detail that had gone into this piece. And that completely changed my view.

  • Fast forward a couple of months and suddenly I read that part of the poppies: Wave, are on a UK tour and until 10 January 2016 are at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park. I’m trilled that I now have the opportunity to see a small part of the original poppies sculpture and it will also give me the opportunity to study the Crawling Lady Hare in more detail.

  • Reference:
    Yorkshire Sculpture Park – ysp.co.uk
    Historical Royal Palaces – hrp.org.uk
    Ursula Von Rydingsvard – Ursulavonrydingsvard.net
    Sophie Ryder – sophieryder.org
    Images: Commons.wikimedia.org

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