Wooden sculptures by Christopher King
In 2013, shortly after moving into a small cottage in the Sussex Weald I started making the first birds out of off-cuts of English willow. I wanted to make something that reminded me of the swifts and swallows that I watched darting over nearby fields when I was out walking in the summer. The first ones were a little crude, but slowly the shape became better, closer to the thing I was looking for: a minimal, modern form that echoed the elegant simplicity of the birds that visit us from distant, warm climes: visitors that are deeply embedded in our cold country's perception of the changing seasons.
"It's surely summer, for there's a swallow: Come one swallow, his mate will follow, the bird race quicken and wheel and thicken." - Christina G. Rossetti
Each bird is hand carved and unique. After shaping I decide on a finish will best suit the individual sculpture. Some birds are quiet, some are dark, some require no paint at at all. They all have their own character.
Each bird is mounted on its own base, usually made of ash and reclaimed oak, but sometimes the bases can be as individual as the bird.