The Hare and The Gorse – Gorse Mad Sculptures – Kim Weiler
The Golden Glow Of Gorse
Walking in The New Forest on the heathland, your senses come alive with the aroma of the richly scented, bright yellow flowers of the gorse, or “furze” as it is locally known. The flowers take-on a glorious, golden glow throughout the year especially at sunrise and sundown. They can be seen every month of the year, giving rise to the old saying “when the Gorse in not in bloom, kissing is out of fashion”!
The annual controlled burning of the heather and gorse in the New Forest helps to reinvigorate the heathland for new growth and it leaves behind “ blackjacks”, the charred remains of the gorse wood. A traditional benefit of controlled burning, but one not practised today, was the harvesting by the commoners of the burnt holly and gorse stems which they used for firewood. The gnarled remains are quite amazing as your imagination can turn them into all kinds of mythical and magical creatures!
Spectaular Gorse Art
The knots, curls, texture and shapes of gorse wood have been the inspiration for a local artist Kim Weiler, who creates the most spectacular pieces. Kim collects the gorse wood from the forest, which she has to obtain a licence to do , and crafts the pieces into hares, fish, horses, sailing boats to name a few.
Sitting next to me in the gallery is my friend The Hare. One of Kim’s creations. It feels a little like having the Jack, the family pooch, sitting watching me , and I have to admit I have spoken to The Hare a few times this morning!