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  Spring 2021   After a quieter winter in the forge than normal, I am back running my blacksmithing day courses as per Government guidelines with one to one sessions for the people that have had their courses postponed from 2020.    Ridgeway Farm Art Project is currently awaiting planning approval for both the entrance sign and the Community Orchard - I very much hope that these two aspects of the project will get moving soon!   In the meantime, I am drying some larch boards ready to make bat boxes to go on oak posts in the hedgerows around the development.  When community groups can safely and confidently meet again I still want to do community making sessions for residents to make their own bat boxes.   I have been working on designs for another public art project in Oxford and very much hope this will be approved and I can make the lovely pieces I have designed. I was sent some great photos of Chippenham Town Bridge - a piece I designed many years ago which still looks great today!
Recent posts

Wiltshire Life – Individuals Arts, Culture & Music Award Winner 2020

  Wiltshire Life  – Individuals Arts, Culture & Music Award Winner 2020 Moravian Star inspired Public Sculpture for the new Rausing Building (Athelstan Museum) in Malmesbury, Wiltshire, UK.  This public sculpture was commissioned by Angela and William Sykes and the team organising the renovation of the former Moravian Church in Malmesbury as a new community building and extension of the Athelstan Museum. In October, I was awarded the Wiltshire Life 2020 Individual Arts, Culture and Music Award for my work in visual arts and crafts and for the     Moravian Star Inspired public sculpture for the garden area of the new Rausing Building ( Athelstan Museum wing) in Malmesbury , Wiltshire.   It was a really lovely surprise to be a winner and I am really delighted to get some recognition for my work and this sculpture in particular which is a really dynamic and uplifting piece of public art in my home town. Many thanks to everyone involved in this piece of public art including my worksh

Society of Women Artists 159th Open Exhibition

I am really happy that for the first time my sculptures have been accepted into the 159th Society of Women Artists Open Exhibition.  Normally my work is too big (but not that big!) for these types of open submission!  Because of Covid-19 this is an online exhibition from 22nd September - 31st December 2020  You can view the whole exhibition following this link  Society of Women Artists Online Exhibition   LANDSCAPE No. II - NH5690 This sculpture was made as a response to the landscape around Puthall Farm, Stitchcombe and Savernake Forest where I would regularly ride, bike and walk.  It is one of three modular sculptures that fit together as one unit or stand alone as individual sculptures.  Capturing the flow of the landscape as I move through it is the basis of the work; the sunlight catching the tree tops highlighted in gold leaf.  This work is a combination of drawings from the land and interpreted landscape formation following farmed lines and paths created by livestock. LIFELINE P

SCULPTURE EXHIBITION Sept 2020, Wiltshire, UK

  ‘Sculpture in the Landscape 1969 – 2020’ Location: West Leaze, Ogbourne Rd, Aldbourne, SN8 2LD  3 – 27 September 2020  Wednesday - Sundays 11am to 6pm It is organised by voluntary organisation 'Friends of the Garden' which have posted previous exhibitions in Urchfont and West Lavington.  Over 30 artists will exhibit sculpture in this very beautiful landscape setting high on the Marlborough downs. They include Wiltshire based artists Lisi Ashbridge, Dominic Clare, James Jones and Johannes Von Stumm and Melissa Cole.  West Leaze as built in 1948 'West Leaze', near Aldbourne was one of the first modernist architecture homes in the country of Wiltshire and was  commissioned by Labour politicians Hugh and Ruth Dalton.  The next owners were Roger and Pat Leigh.  Roger begun sculpting in 1948 and once worked as an assistant to Barbara Hepworth. In 1969 the Leigh’s organised an exhibition involving eighteen artists. The reputations of some remains high today and their work su

Ridgeway Farm Art Project Newsletter No.8 August 2020

Ridgeway Farm Nature Trail Map - hand delivered to your home! Phase 2 of the Ridgeway Farm Art Project is now complete and nearly all the residents should have a copy of the hand-illustrated nature map of the development.   If you are unfamiliar with the project, here is a brief catch-up:   The map is drawn by myself and has images included on the front by pupils from Cherry Trees Class at Ridgeway Farm Academy.  The little winter trees in the south east corner, the plan view of a street in the west and the birds eye view drawing of the school in the centre of the map were done on an art day in school where I asked the children to imagine they were a bird flying over the development and could they draw what they see.    This is a great way to think about the space around where you live or learn, you can re member small details when you take time to think about it and planning these out in a simple way helps to familiarise yourself with your surroundings and how you interact with them.

CROPS Entrance Sign Design Voted As Favourite For Ridgeway Farm Development July 2020

Thanks to everyone that voted for their favourite design for the new entrance sign at Ridgeway Farm - I was really pleased with the feedback and comments and am delighted that the most popular design is CROPS. This sketch design will be worked up now for planning consent and into working drawings ready hopefully for forging in the Autumn.  I am looking forward to getting stuck into this and will post regular updates on my Instagram page of work in progress  https://www.instagram.com/melissacole001 Here is a mock-up sketch of how it could look from the road approaching from Purton I will be next on site delivering free hand illustrated nature trail maps for residents - let me know if you would like a copy by email or on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/melissa.cole.71619 #ridgewayfarmart

Ridgeway Farm Art Project - Designs for a new Entrance Sign - Vote Now!

This blog post is to share the designs for a   new sign   proposed for   the entrance to Ridgeway Farm development from Purton.  If you have read the other newsletters and blogs you will be up to date with progress of the project and the reasons for this location but just in case you missed it, the best space for a bespoke Ridgeway Farm entrance sign is on the public open space to the left hand side (north) of Cowleaze, approaching from Purton, opposite "Snail Hill'. I have three design options for you to consider and vote for your favourite by email or on social media. The three design ideas draw on the unique topography of your immediate landscape - "Snail Hill' and the dips and peaks of the open spaces, roads and paths that interweave between your houses giving your homes an intimate, village feel.   Combined with the recent farming history of the site I have developed two designs that reflect this: crops growing and a pastoral scene depicting old English animal b