Red Kites in flight

Red Kite Windows artworks installed at Priors Hall Park

A series of 3 new artworks were unveiled at Priors Hall Park on Saturday 3rd June 2017, chosen by local residents as part of the Made In Corby programme, which is funded by Arts Council England through the National Lottery.

Over the past year a group of volunteers from Priors Hall Park Neighbourhood Association have been working with a mentor from Fermynwoods Contemporary Art after responding to a call out from Made In Corby for groups who wanted to ‘create some extraordinary art’. The volunteer panel decided they wanted to commission a piece of public art to enhance their area, and wrote an artist brief which went out locally and nationally to invite creative responses.

Mike Haddock, panel member and Chair of Priors Hall Park Neighbourhood Association said, “Having considered over 50 applications and narrowed it down to three interviewees, we eventually opted unanimously for the Red Kite Windows. The vision for the site of the Red Kite effectively being ‘re-born’ locally, linked exactly to the use of Priors Hall Park; of new life and new opportunities, yet embracing the sound traditional aspects of life in the area.”

The Artist

Lead artist, Ralph Skrimshire, a Sheffield based carpenter who has been working with wood for over ten years, uses traditional woodworking techniques and native timbers as the starting point for all of his work. The kites are crafted from oak, with traditionally leaded stained by glass artist Juliet Forrest, who has created original panels for each of the three pairs of birds.

Ralph says of the artwork, “It is intended to reflect elements of traditional British villlage life, living in close in proximity to the natural world, and a sense of community in which we share our home with with each other and with wildlife. The designs on the stained glass panels reflect aspects of their locations: Rockingham Gate, Town Gardens and Weldon Lakes respectively”.

Ralph also led workshops in April to allow the local community to contribute to the artwork by helping carve the kite’s tails. A photography competition has also been run by supporting artist Mike Preston to capture ‘Priors Hall Park Through A Lens’, which will culminate in a photography exhibition that will be held in the new community centre when it opens.

For more information about the sculptures and the forthcoming photography exhibition please see the project’s microsite at www.art.priorshall.net