For The Love Of Sheep
For The Love Of Sheep was commissioned by the Stroudwater Textiles Trust, who had seen our ‘Water’ cabinet exhibited at Museum in the Park and contacted us to create an installation for the upcoming Wool and Water Festival. This new work is generously supported by Arts Council England.
The brief was for a site-responsive sculpture at the Dunkirk Mill Museum – created for the festival that would also reside there over the longer term. Given Bart’s background in large scale engineering-theatre design, and the nature of the site we were encouraged to think big. The situation begged the opportunity to drive a kinetic sculpture off the mill wheel, departing from the miniature to explore the heritage of the mill industry through larger scale mechanics.
Our background of working with kinetic mechanical structures, as well as with the themes of textiles, water and mills around Stroud, all come together in this piece. We play with some of our favourites – the beauty of movement, fantasy and invention.
“This is about a machine that is a replica of one that was found in a, now demolished, mill in one of the Stroud Valleys.
It probably stems from an attempt to compete with the growing trade in softer, longer stranded, Australian wool.
The inventor of this contraption was far ahead of his time, only nowadays it is dawning on us that the care for the wellbeing of our farm animals is not only a sign of civilisation and an ecological duty, it might also improve the quality of the yield.
What became of the inventor and his invention we don’t know, clearly both were forgotten.
It might also be that the noise of the waterwheel had an adverse effect on the desired outcome.
The thought behind it is one to remember though”
Replica made by Tara & Bart