Tuesday, 7 January 2020

Field for the British Isles - an exhibition by Antony Gormley

I love unexpected surprises! One way I find these is going somewhere and allowing myself time to wander and just enjoy new possibilities. And this is what happened yesterday. My husband and I were walking past First Sight, a exhibition gallery in Essex. He had never been there I suggested he might like to see where I often disappear to.  

I’m SO glad that I did! Because I have always liked Antony Gormley’s work and didn't know there was a exibition on display here! I lost no time in taking photos from every angle and talking to a curator about the exhibition.  I will leave a link at the end for anyone who wants to know more, but briefly, it represents our ancestors, those who have been here before us; and the unborn who are yet to come. These terracota human forms look up at us, as guardians of the earth, asking 

'What kind of future are you creating for us?' and 

'What kind of world are you making for us?'

At this time of catastrophic fires in Australia, and atrocities around the world, these are salient questions. 

And yet, as people come together we can be powerful. When David Attenburgh highlighted what damage plastic is doing to our earth it started to finally create change and awareness. And who hasn't heard of Greta Thunberg? This 16 year old girl has demonstrated that one person can have a voice. Antony Gormley's approach is more subtle but it says much. 

He didn't want to work in isolation for this art piece and wanted it to be about people. The result is 40,000 terracota clay human forms made by children, their parents, their grandparents, and others who are part of 2 schools in his local community. And since then the exhibition has travelled. And still the people come together. 

30 volunteers spent 3 days solid setting up this display. And that's after walls were built and other spaces opened up. And what you see is literally a sea of 'people' with big eyes looking up. They drift out of view, into different rooms, a powerful image that holds your attention. And in front of you, without barrier, is a row of small people. Different sizes, shape, and colour. A reminder that WE are the guardians of the earth, and that the clay has come from the earth and will one day return to it.

The collection when displayed in a larger area (photo from a video playing).
If ever you get a chance to see this exhibition I recommend it. What made it extra special was not knowing it was there. The surprise element evoked excitement and wanting to know more about it. Because some might see these crude shapes and dismiss them without knowing about the powerful message and meaning behind them. Thank you Antony Gormley for opening my eyes to this.


Monday, 6 January 2020

One Word 2020 - Flourish

Do you choose 'One Word' for the year ahead?

I did this for years and then life got busy. Last year my chosen word was not embraced and held close to my heart, as before. 

So, this year I am changing that. And the same word speaks to me:


It means: To grow or develop in a healthy way, to thrive and be in a healthy state, to be successful and do well.

And it feels right, because last year I focused on improving my health. I released 3 stone and have seen benefits that I had not anticipated. Like, having more energy, and feeling fitter even if I have not done any exercise to achieve this. 

I have a clear memory of walking up a long steep hill with a friend. We chatted as we walked until I suddenly felt on my own. Looking back I saw my friend way behind, pausing to catch her breath. What made this memorable?  Because once that would have been ME! 

I was the one who would call out to my husband and son that I'd catch them up. 
I was the one struggling to breathe as our walks became arduous. 

No more!

And the change has impacted on other areas of my life too. My GP always told me that I would find it more difficult to reduce weight because I have an underactive thyroid. We sometimes believe stories we are told and that feeds into our self belief. But it wasn't true!
So many myths and stories have been dispelled and while my body has reduced I have grown in so many other ways! 

So, here's to 2020! 

My year to Flourish and keep flourishing! 

Sunday, 5 January 2020

5 in 5 - January 2020 - City surprises

Welcome to '5 in 5' where on the 5th
of each month I post 5 photos that I have
taken in 5 minutes.

Wishing all my followers and fellow ‘5in5’ participants a very happy New Year! 

I love visits and how these can take unexpected and exciting turns.  Take Friday. I went on a day trip to London and had a few places in mind that I wanted to see. On our way we passed very close to The Gerkin, and I have never been up close, only seen it from a distance. But today we had time just to explore and enjoy so this was an opportunity to change that. My perfect kind of day.

 I love reflections, and the glass panels delivered!


We were about to continue on our way when my husband spotted an old church opposite. In complete contrast to the modern architecture, he suggested we take a look.  And I'm so glad we did because that's when I spotted this strange object further along..... 

We had discovered 'Sculpture in the City'.  I hadn't known about this collection of art and it led us to a number of others in the area, adding interest and an unexpected surprise to our walk.

That's what I love about days where you have time to explore. Like many others, I spend so much time going somewhere and not having time to wander or stop, so I am planning more of these days this year. We had other wonderful surprises and they will have to be other blog posts because I've already snucked in an extra photo, of the sculpture trail. 

Thank you for popping by and I hope you have good things of your own planned for the coming year. And before I go: 

as always, I invite you to join in this 5in5 monthly challenge and I hope some of you will do that. Trying a new way of doing things can spark new ideas and add interest, so here's how it works: 

1.  Choose a location.
2.  Have your camera ready.
3.  Set a mobile timer for 5 minutes.
4.  Take as many photos you can until the time is up.
5.  Choose 5 photos to download and share by using the link tool 
You have until the 25th of the month to add your photos and if you want to know more about 5in5 there are details here.

And one more thing - when you use the link tool, please click on your post title.  This will show the web address. Please right click, copy and paste this as your link.  This will take readers directly to your '5 in 5' blog page and be easier for them to find.

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