I’m delighted to announce that some of my Liverpool work is going to be exhibited (and will be available to buy) at the Liverpool Art Fair, which runs from 14 June to 1 September 2019, at the Metquarter in Liverpool city centre. The fair is free to enter.
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertide.
Now, of my threescore years and ten,
Twenty will not come again,
And take from seventy springs a score,
It only leaves me fifty more.
And since to look at things in bloom
Fifty springs are little room,
About the woodlands I will go
To see the cherry hung with snow.
—A. E. Housman
This work is available for sale in a limited edition of 7.
It is Spring; it is beautiful. The trees are gradually being enveloped in a haze of fresh green leaves, the sun is shining, and bluebells are starting to drop shadow the woods with blue. I am working through the winter’s photographs, looking at places that will soon be made inaccessible by bracken. These are hidden corners, away from the popular footpaths. If they are not quite forgotten—note the stacked logs—then they are quietly neglected. These are my favourite places.
In Autumn, the tide of bracken on the fells recedes, revealing a scattered Atlantis of forgotten walls, enclosures, and tumbledown buildings from long ago. Over there is a wall built by a landowner to protect his investment in Larch, never realised; here the remains of a small hut, perhaps for a shepherd, caught out at nightfall. In Summer, when the holidaymakers arrive in numbers, and the bracken grows tall, these modest ruins are submerged again. Only the sheep and deer venture into the green shallows. (The bracken is unpleasant against human skin, and besides, is infested with ticks.) I imagine the men who built these walls sleeping out on the fells; their backs stooped, hands toughened by the coarse stones that declare someone else’s ownership. Now these old structures have become sunken reefs, soft with moss, daubed with lichen; alive with birds, insects, delicate lizards. Returning from the stand of pines where I have been taking photographs, I follow a track from a badger sett to where it joins the path that is on the map. The track is strewn with hidden stones from ancient boundary lines. I stumble down the slope to the surface of the world.
Autumn, 2018. Sometimes a landscape can be on a small scale.