I normally love this time of year but I do feel like something is missing. We should be at RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2020 this week! It would have been my eleventh year exhibiting at the show. We would have spent the last few months getting ready for one of the most important events in my calendar. I am so lucky to have fantastic support for Chelsea. Knight Frank are my generous sponsors and Bowles and Wyer are my design and build team. They make putting it all together look like a walk in the park, but of course it isn’t. They work hard to create an exhibition stand that shows off my sculptures to their best advantage, wonderfully complemented by sympathetic planting. They manage to make it both eye-catching and elegant and last year we won 5 stars! This is what the stand would have looked like this year:
The horticultural show traditionally marks the start of the British summer season. It is also the first major event for Hamish Mackie Sculptures and I always use it as a debut outing for new sculptures. I love seeing people’s reactions. I was particularly looking forward to showing my stainless steel Ammonite Cretaceous after the success of the Ammonite Jurassic last year. They both look especially dramatic in a garden. They reflect the light and are a wonderful contrast to natural stone.
As I only have a solo show every three or four years, Chelsea is a great opportunity for collectors to catch up with what I’ve been doing. What I really love though, is inspiring gardeners to think about how they can incorporate sculpture in their designs. Chelsea is a chance for me to bring art and horticulture together and showcase how the two can work effectively side by side. My new series of deer sculptures – Roe Buck Standing, Roe Doe Standing, Roe Buck Lying Down – are perfect for placing in a natural landscape, in long grasses or woodlands. Hare and Hares Boxing also look completely at home in a country garden.
I will miss the buzz of the show and the chance to get together with other exhibitors and garden designers. Chelsea is a great place to swap ideas and tune in to a creative vibe. I absolutely love seeing all the show gardens, but the RHS have done a brilliant job of moving the show online at Virtual RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2020. I’m looking forward to seeing video tours from the gardens of well-known Chelsea designers, like gold medal winner Sarah Eberle who is going to offer inspiring design tips from her woodland garden. I’ll also definitely be checking out Matt Keightley, who designed the 2018 Chelsea RHS Feel-Good Garden to support health and wellbeing.
We are also going to be posting some videos on our social media this week, so keep a look out. And of course you can come and view sculptures in my studio in Oxfordshire. Give us a ring to make an appointment or to discuss a commission. We will be publishing my new catalogue later this year, so do sign up to the mailing list on my contact page.
It’s a beautiful day here in the Cotswolds with the weather set to be fair for the next couple of weeks. The garden looks fantastic at the moment, with all the blossom and spring flowers out, the foliage all lush and green. In the spirit of Chelsea Flower Show, I’ve taken every opportunity to get outside in the sunshine, even making my own design alterations to the garden with my girls!
See you at Chelsea 2021!