To Hold, To Let Go, 2019


A collaboration with Milkweed and Totnes Progressive School for the EDGE Sculpture Trail, Dartmoor. This work was created with groups of children. For many it was their first encounter with clay.


As we formed the bowls, we passed them clockwise around the circle - each bowl was made by many hands. Each time a bowl was passed to us we could feel the hands that held it before - their warmth, the marks they has made, the way they had moved with the clay. Each hand left traces, fingerprints, shapes. Our own hands became part of that pattern.


The clay was unfired. In situ on Dartmoor with the help of the wind, rain, sun, they began to break down and return to the earth. Clay itself is not alive, but as a mineral it is sensitive to life. It can mediate between what comes in from the outside and what comes up from below, enriching and fertilising the soil.


The clay bowls and beads are vessels - for a spiders web, for leaves, dew, rain, pollen. They are objects we must let go of as they dissolve and disappear. They are offerings to the land, the returning of a material that has been extracted. This is an exploration of what happens when we do not take that final step to make things permanent, when we create with materials that bio-degrade and nourish.

Using Format