We are busy getting ready for the RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2019.
It is our big event of the year and I really look forward to it. This will be our tenth exhibition at Chelsea! I am very grateful to the organisers for giving us our regular spot at Stand 292. It’s a great location with wonderful views over the main show gardens and everyone knows where to find us.
For the second year running, Knight Frank are sponsoring my stand. Their generosity makes such a difference to the exhibition. I am also working with Bowles and Wyer again as well. They make putting together the design, building the set and co-ordinating the planting look easy! And of course it isn’t. It is hugely time-consuming and complicated and there is a lot of liaising with the RHS organisers to be done too. In fact it is all a bit beyond a mere sculptor, so having Knight Frank and Bowles & Wyer on board is a godsend. I’ve got a crack team which allows me to concentrate on spending time in my studio.
I’m excited to be showing new sculptures. With my next solo exhibition not until 2020, it’s a great opportunity for collectors to catch up with what I’ve been doing. You’ll be able to see Fallow Buck Running and Fallow Buck Standing, which look great in a natural landscape. Woodland and wild gardens are trending at the moment. My deer have found homes all over the world, placed outside in long grasses and woodlands. I like to think of viewers stumbling upon them as they graze quietly under the trees.
You’ll also be able to see my new African sculptures. I visited Lewa and the Northern Rangelands Trust communities, including Il Ngwesi and Reteti last year. On my return, I made Caracal Head and the Dik dik, as well as the Cheetah, Impala, Cheetah Impala Kill series. I also made another series, Black Rhino Itch, Black Rhino Running and Baby Rhino after Mud Bath.
Closer to home, I have just finished my new Grouse sculptures which will also be on display. They look great both inside and outside too.
I am particularly pleased to be showing my fossil sculptures at Chelsea. Ammonite Cretaceous and the smaller Ammonite Jurassic Cracked are both available in bronze and stainless steel. Since August, a new tilt furnace has been installed at the foundry to make stainless steel casting possible. A huge undertaking but the creative possibilities are so exciting! You’ll be able to see how fantastic they look.
It’s a great atmosphere at RHS Chelsea Flower Show. I enjoy catching up with old friends and clients and meeting new ones. It’s always good to touch base with other sculptors, exhibitors, gardener designers and plant specialists. And my favourite – the Chelsea Pensioners. A few years ago, I met Prince Philip when he visited my stand and admired one of my Cheetah sculptures. I’m always hoping Her Majesty The Queen will drop by!
RHS Chelsea Flower Show is the traditional start of the season. Fingers crossed for good weather. Mind you, even if it rains it will still be a welcome diversion for everyone from the endless drama of Brexit …