Prison Or Protection?

23 Apr

Carreg Coch

Across the field from the Clos Teg standing stone there’s another maenhir in the hedge, Y Garreg Goch – the Red Stone, a monument of red standstone. It’s trapped between two fences and until recently was overgrown with ivy. It looked to me like it was imprisoned, but archaeologist Dewi reasonably pointed out that being in a hedge, fenced in, might have saved it from being moved or destroyed and that hedges often offer shelter to stones.

I had already prepared some Fabriano paper with walnut ink and I selected a piece I thought fitted the scene and drew with conte crayon in sanguine and white, following the contours of this fine stone. I kept the drawing simple as I wanted to focus on the barbed wire fence.

I’m travelling around South West Wales with archaeologist Dewi Bowen who is researching his new book on Neolithic / Bronze Age monuments. His previous book on the stones of Ancient Siluria (South East Wales) can be found here. Accompanying us is film maker Melvyn Williams who is recording a documentary about our experiences. Some of Melvyn’s short films can be seen here. I’m currently working on a series of expressive drawings of ancestral sites and if you want to see some of my other artworks, please click here.

7 Responses to “Prison Or Protection?”

  1. Phil Cooper April 25, 2016 at 11:10 #

    Love the simplicity of that drawing, and the focus on the wire fence, it highlights the challenge of how we look after these amazing stones, what’s the right balance. The stone looks alive in your drawing – fab 😊

    • Rosie Scribblah April 25, 2016 at 20:00 #

      Thank you Phil. I’m developing such a different way of drawing with these stones 😀

  2. Leonie Andrews April 24, 2016 at 01:48 #

    Given the stories of the stones, their propensity to walk etc I like the concept of the hedges providing shelter. But the barbed wire seems harsh – although perfectly reasonable from the landholders perspective. How would we respond if it was a wooden post and rail fence? I assume if livestock are in the area that the stone would need protection from being used as a rubbing post.

    • Rosie Scribblah April 24, 2016 at 06:56 #

      It was a jarring contrast but great visually. Livestock don’t seem to harm the stones, they use them for shelter and that’s why the stones became so important to hunters.

      • Leonie Andrews April 24, 2016 at 07:22 #

        That’s something I never knew. ☺

  3. outsideauthority April 23, 2016 at 23:42 #

    I visited some standing stones in the highlands, one (two?) was outside, behind a wall, on the road. It didn’t feel right, but i was only a visitor.

    • Rosie Scribblah April 24, 2016 at 06:54 #

      It’s a weird feeling when they are in an urban setting, I find

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