Heritage brought alive with printmaking, poetry, ceramics, and a wedding dress that tells a story
The exhibition is bursting with creative work made by local young people and families and is open to the public from Saturday 29th January at Knightshayes on the outskirts of Tiverton. National Trust officials have urged visitors to check opening times before they plan their trip.
The creative work on show is the culmination of two years of workshops led by a selection of Daisi’s artists. Children from Heathcoat, Rackenford and Bolham Primary Schools have worked with storyteller Sara Hurley and visual artist Monica Shanta Brown to explore the history. The children worked with pattern and design inspired by hexagonal machine lace, the ceilings at Knightshayes and the rivets on the Mars Rover. Imagining themselves as people across history, they wrote poetry, stories, and audio plays.
The last resident of Knightshayes was internationally acclaimed championship golfer, Joyce Wethered (Lady Heathcoat-Amory). Tiverton High School girls took part in a ‘Golf and Ceramics’ course. They had the chance to feel what it was like to strike a golf ball like Joyce Wethered with PGA coach, Richard Coffin from Silverleigh Golf Centre. Following that, they made commemorative slipware plates with RAMP Ceramics.
The remarkable centrepiece of the exhibition is ‘Nerio’s Wedding Dress’. Nerio is the Roman goddess of strength, war and diplomacy and wife of Mars. The dress is a unique creation, telling the story of 200 years of Tiverton through fabric – from Lace to Space – the walk from Loughborough (1816), the wedding veils made at Heathcoat’s factory for every royal bride since Queen Victoria, through to the production of the parachute for the Mars landing (2020).
The children’s creative designs have been included in Nerio’s Wedding Dress, and art students from Petroc College worked alongside Monica Shanta Brown to create the final dress.
Daisi project manager Rae Hoole is “delighted with the outcomes of this project, which has withstood numerous COVID restrictions and delays. We have been able to involve a wide cross section of the community and have made innovative and thought provoking responses to Tiverton’s history. A big thank you to all our partners and funders: The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Mid-Devon District Council, the Heathcoat Family Trust, Knightshayes and the National Trust, Tiverton Museum of Mid-Devon Life, RAMP Pottery, Double Elephant Print Workshop and Siverleigh Golf Centre. And the individual artists who led workshops and helped bring the creative work to fruition”.
The exhibition can be seen between 29th January and 28th of February at Knightshayes, Bolham, Tiverton EX16 7RQ