‘Touching Souls’ by Mico Kaufman, Tewkesbury Abbey
During our recent stay in the Malverns we had the opportunity to explore the many abbeys in the area, all works of art in themselves! As we left the grounds of Tewkesbury Abbey we came across this sculpture at the front, placed outside the ‘Touching Souls’ tea room in the visitor centre, run by volunteers keeping up the tradition of Benedictine hospitality as shown by the original abbey community.
My granddaughter loved the life size sculptures, running around them and eventually sitting on the lap of the ‘girl’ at the back of the group.
It was my son who worked out the double meaning of ‘touching souls’ that the arrangement represents….. it took me a while but eventually I understood too! You’ll probably get there quicker than I did – I’m always the last to work out the punchline of a joke!
Last September I (and friend) visited the ‘Houghton Revisited’ exhibition at Houghton Hall in Norfolk. As we walked around the Sculpture Park in the grounds afterwards we were intrigued, along with many others, by this ‘Fire and Water’ piece. The flame appeared to burn at the top of a jet of water and there was much discussion amongst the people standing around it as to how it worked. At one point the flame went out and the water jet dropped to the pool below, giving us a chance to watch the gas jet reignite at the bottom followed by the water jet which carried the flame to the top with the gas rising inside the fountain.
Very clever and quite mesmerising!
Last summer I realised a long held wish to visit the island of Iona. I’m not sure when exactly, or where, the seed of that wish germinated, only that I felt it was a missing link having visited the Isle of Lindisfarne and Caldy Island. I needed to complete my trio of religious islands.
It was a complicated journey, although I suppose nowhere near as complicated as it was for the original pilgrims, and one I made alone, even though I was surrounded by people on the journey and on the island.
Hidden deep within the abbey, protected by the cloisters, I found this amazing sculpture. Even here I was not alone, with people wandering inside the cloisters and the sound of voices coming through the open windows from inside the abbey buildings.