The project started with an interview in London with Stuart Barlow of the International firm of architects Geoffrey Reid Associates on behalf of JS Developments and Castle City Estates Ltd for an Artwork at Telford Forge Retail Park in 1998.
The brief was to signpost the different shops and products that could be purchased on site. The idea evolved into a single large scale composition of everyday objects arranged like an early Sainsbury shop window display; hence the milk-jug, butter, cheese and stacked cans. There are also renditions of a mobile phone, an anvil, toothpaste, an arm chair an electric plug, model aircraft and an aerosol can.
It was at this point that I completely changed my method of working using 3mm sheet producing large, hollow objects that were eventually galvanised instead of making objects with the hammer and heat of a forge. Funny really as the site used to be an area famous for its forges.
With advice from Philomena Davidson Davis I met up with the clients on several occasions in my back garden in Alton when we would discuss progress. I would arrange the latest batch of objects made at my workshop and stack, lean and otherwise try to create a complete form that would ‘work’ from viewers sitting in the seats of orbiting cars, lorries and buses.
The project influenced my way of working for several years and led me to make several sculptures such as the Sharpener, Chew and Peelings for Susi Gwyn, using similar techniques.
I fitted the work on a freezing winters night amidst torrential rain and flurries of sleet with the help of stone mason and friend James Tonner .I returned several years later to see that the galvanised surfaces had weathered from silver to grey and got some positive feedback from shoppers in the café at Sainsburys.