Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Poppies at the Tower

During our visit to London, Tutt, Caroline and I decided we'd go and see the poppy installation at the Tower of London. With less than a fortnight to go before November 11th, the display (which will number over 880,000 poppies by the end) was nearly complete.

It really was amazing to look at. I must go back and visit the Tower one day when they are gone so I can get an idea of what the moat looks like when it's not a sea of red.

My only issues with it was, it was SO busy. Literally thousands of people, pushing and shoving and all trying to get a good shot. It turns out we had decided to visit on London Poppy Day, which may be why there were so many people in attendance; it took us about 15 minutes to get out of the tube station and across the road. It was a bit overwhelming; I would have liked to have spent longer wandering and got a few pictures from other angles, but I will have to make do with these.

We found a spot where the crowd was thinner and I could get right up to the railings, allowing for a good shot of a making table. My mind was a bit boggled by the logistics of making nearly a million ceramic poppies so it was good to be able to see this close up. I thought they might have coloured the clay ahead of time, but Caroline told me they were glazed separately. She's the art teacher, so I bow to her wisdom on this. Time consuming or what!

I managed to convince them both to pose. This will be a good visit to look back on in future.

There was somebody on the radio today talking about how he's started a petition to get the installation in place for longer; the Tower folks commented that the transient nature of the exhibition was part of its essence. I think I agree with them. It would be good if more people could see it, sure; but the temporary nature of the poppies, and the fact that they then go "home" with people, adds something to it for me - like soldiers fighting in a war. 

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