Langley Vale Centenary Wood

Willow Wreath Langley Vale Centenary Wood2018 has been an enormous year of remembrance across the country. Arts, archive and community projects have captured the thoughts of the nation. Victoria was commissioned by the Woodland Trust to create a willow wreath installation for the month of remembrance as part of the Remembrance Trail in Langley Vale wood.

The remembrance exhortation was the starting point for Victoria ‘s concept which uses the exhortation as it’s physical foundation. It is featured on the ends of 11 logs which support the large willow wreath. The 11 logs represent the 11th day of the 11th month and connect the willow wreath to the earth, giving it a sense of place and weight within Langley Vale Wood.

Victoria was moved by the process of weaving this piece of work, the many thousands of withies which were repeatedly woven into the sculpture and acted as a reminder of each individual who was involved in the conflict. The opportunity to gather stories and memories of the public was the element that bought the piece to life.

This relatively young woodland near Epsom Surrey is a Commemoration wood which offers a place for quiet reflection. The centenary wood has areas of ancient woodland and stunning views of the South Downs. Langley Vale is a First World War centenary wood which has links to the Great War during the conflict it was used as a base for military exercises and a gas training school. The Woodland Trust were looking for a piece of work which acted as a halfway resting point to the heritage trail where visible could pause and reflect. The willow wreath sculpture was used to gather personal stories and reflections, visitors were encouraged to write down their thoughts onto wooden leaves which were then threaded onto the wreath. Another element of engaging the public was to give them a chance to gather natural  materials from around the wood and weave them into the willow wreath.

The Woodland Trust are hoping to position the remembrance Willow wreath in a permanent position as the woodland develops and other pieces of artwork are added to the Langley Vale Wood.

Langley Vale Centenary Wood

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