Brick chair sculpture unveiled in Hednesford Park

Rosemary Cripps Hednesford Park

A brick chair sculpture has been unveiled in Hednesford Park, nearly 20 years after it was originally donated to Cannock Chase Council.

The chair will be a significant addition to the story walk events and activities held in the park lead by the Community and Education team throughout the year and will encourage local schools to use it to promote story telling sessions as part of the school curriculum.

The sculpture was made by Rosemary Cripps in 1999 whilst she was studying for a degree in Ceramics and Sculpture at Wolverhampton University. Rosemary’s idea was to create a large sculpture for displaying in a public space that could be used by all ages.

The chair was made from large raw clay bricks, which were carved into the chair design. Rosemary then had to dismantle the chair piece by piece, hollowing out each brick so that they would not fracture in the high-temperature kiln, then mark them with a unique code and drawing plan, so it could be reassembled once it had been fired.

The project was sponsored by Ibstocks Bricks of Aldridge in Walsall, who fired the clay bricks in their kiln and transported them to Cannock Chase Council for storage.

Earlier this summer a special foundation was prepared and the sculpture was built using Rosemary’s numbering system and detailed plan in Hednesford Park.

The chair unveiling in conjunction with the libraries ‘Mischief Makers Summer Reading Challenge’ where children had to complete reading 6 books of their choice during the 6 week holidays.

The event included a ‘pie face challenge’ for those who had completed the challenge along with fun craft activities in the library and storytelling of mischief stories in Rosemary’s chair.

Councillor Christine Mitchell, Portfolio Leader for Culture and Sport said “I am so pleased that the chair has been built in Hednesford Park.  It will be a great addition to the story telling activities which take place in the park each year.  We thank Rosemary for donating the sculpture to the Council.”

Rosemary Cripps added “As part of my project in 1999, I wanted to create a large sculpture for display in a public space.  I am delighted that my vision is now a reality and that the chair will be used by the local community in conjunction with Hednesford Library.  I hope it will give pleasure to visitors to the park for many years to come.  I am grateful to have been invited to the event, to see the chair in place and meet and thank some of the people who have been involved in reassembling my chair in the park, almost 20 years since it was created.”

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