Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Sculpture by Sam Moulsdale at Quarter Jack pub in Wells, Somerset

If you visit 'The Quarter Jack' pub in Wells, Somerset, look out for this amazing sculpture by Sam Moulsdale. The details below are inscribed next to this impressive piece that was created using St Cuthberts Mill papers!

"The original paper sculpture was commissioned by JD Wetherspoon and includes the lines from a poem entitled “Mendip Hills over Wells” by Henry Alford. Alford was born in Somerset in 1810. In 1853 he moved to London and then onto the Cathedral at Canterbury where he was made Dean in 1857, he died in 1871.

The sculpture by Sam Moulsdale is made from paper manufactured at St Cuthberts Mill, Wells. The inspiration for this piece and the materials used share their origins with the vast and captivating landscape of the Mendip Hills. Drawing from the atmospheric light, the undulating horizons and the rugged nature of the weather, the suggestion of these elements are juxtaposed, producing a sense of the constantly changing nature of the view.

Detail from the sculpture by Sam Moulsdale

The key material, taken from nature itself, is hand worked at the Local St Cuthberts Paper Mill, located in the small hamlet of Haybridge outside the Cathedral City of Wells. When ripped and torn it provides a subtlety of interpretation that closely echoes the rough shapes, promontories and undulations of the hills. The organic material is a metaphor for the organic landscape. The weaving, floating and overlaying implying dynamism of perpetual atmospheric change.

St Cuthberts Mill history began around 1738 when it was known as “Kingston’s Mill” and was owned by Rev Robert Kingston. In 1742 the mill was described as Lower Wookey Mill and in 1786 was leased to Joseph Coles who in 1797 recorded the first Joseph Coles watermarks.

In 1886 the name was changed to St Cuthberts Mill and four years later £38,000 was spent on expanding buildings (to present frontage – the “Buckingham Palace” of paper mills.) The following year St Cuthberts stock papers were marked with a lion but lobbying of the company persuaded them to change the watermark to the City of Wells shield from 1897. In this same year the landmark new chimney was constructed from 300,000 specially made bricks.

Chimney at St Cuthberts Mill

In 1907 the new No.2 machine, the 86” Bertram was installed and is still in use today. In 1973 St Cuthberts Mill sold the Wookey Hole Mill site to Madam Tussauds."

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