Sunday, 21 April 2013

Thornborough Henges

My latest print is inspired by the prehistoric landscape of the Thornborough Henges. These three magnificent Neolithic monuments lie close to the River Ure near Ripon in North Yorkshire. They are defined by concentric rings of deep, wide ditches and high broad banks and are over 200m across. The henges lie together with an earlier cursus, (a very long enclosure of mysterious function), rows of pits and slots, which probably held timber posts and several barrows, which were the burial mounds of the Neolithic and Bronze Age. I've also incorporated the motif from sherds of Neolithic pottery uncovered by archaeological excavations nearby at Nosterfield. I rather like the way that the pottery motif, the cursus and pits have come to look like tattoos on the landscape.

I started with a much more detailed concept, intending to incorporate as much of the contemporary flora and fauna as I could glean from the archaeological record. But midway through sketching I changed direction and pared the design down to these simplest shapes and motifs. I might now return to the original ...

You can read more about the Thornborough Henges and other prehistoric monuments in the area here and about some of the results of excavations in and around the henges here.    

Thornborough Henges - an original lino print is available to buy here.

Friday, 12 April 2013

mystery egg

Can anybody identify this egg? Its about 5cm long.

My son found it in this little mossy hollow in a grassy bank at the edge of the football pitch in the village park but I can't imagine it was laid here. My best guess is that it has fallen from a nest in a nearby tree and been re-nested by unknown hands.


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