The stone has moved to the woods near Park Lane car park, just beyond the park pale which would have originally had a hedged or palisade top to deter the loss of valuable deer. I am learning a good deal about dog varieties, and thus making sure I don’t leave things near the ground.
Day 8 was the day after the remarkable evening event in the Parish church, which introduced a crowd of near ninety to the joys of improvisation and some of those who have been inspired through history by the landscape around Northwood. It was a quiet afternoon – I heard ‘rugby’ mentioned more than once – but sudden gatherings were the order of the day, including one with the Slindon Parish Chairman, who tackled the block with gusto. The block appeared new as it had been turned to a quarry-fresh face. Many faces from the previous evening wandered down to see the proceedings.
Day 9, Easter Saturday, saw hordes descending on Slindon for the egg hunt, and many came and picked up the tools to have a go at carving our stone. Visitors included three sheep, 79 dogs, a policewoman and a passing composer – and good fun was had by all. Here are the Evans family from Walburton, the youngest of which didn’t want to leave at the end of the day. The descending lines of carving from the previous top are now ascending from the now-inaccessible base – the block is being worked ‘in the round’ and turned at each new location to allow the sculptor to ‘read’ the block as well as its weight allows. A smaller sculpture would be turned in the hands regularly to allow the forms to develop.
As another group left the block, the area they had been carving gave me a visual prompt – a knuckle. Feeling this might be useful at some future point, I loosely chiselled in the remaining hand and a semblance of another hand below it – which needed some stone shifting to allow it to have some connection into a possible arm, if it were to be a believable form. Maybe these will disappear in future months, but could they become part of our Northwood sculpture if they are strong enough to survive, and lucky enough to find some sort of narrative to hold them. Keep watching – and please spread the word for the next work day so as many as possible can join in.
Next carving Sunday 12th April 10-4!
2 minutes walk from Park Lane car park