Whimsical Willow Sculptures
Jane Foddy creates beautiful sculptures for the home and garden using willow. She sculpts realistic deer, pigs, chickens and herons as well as white peacocks and fabled unicorns, but her passion is for horses.
Her horse sculptures range from a tiny Shetland pony to a three-quarter size Shire horse. Jane says: “The challenge is to capture the essence of the breed and suggest character, movement and sometimes power in the sculpture.” Her work was on display at shows in Cheshire in 2013 such as the ‘RHS Tatton Flower Show’ and “BBC4’s Gardeners’ Question Time” at Ness Botanical Gardens.‘William’ the willow Shire horse was a hit and many people took their photographs standing next to him. Venues in 2014 include the ‘Tatton Park Country Show’ in May and the ‘North Wales Shire Horse Open Day’ in August - see her website for full details.
Art in the garden
Willow is a natural product that bends in elegant curves. Willow sculptures cast intriguing shadows as the sun moves across the sky, which brings them to life and suggests movement.
“Willow animals add interest throughout the year in and around the garden and home. In the garden, they can animate or personalise an open or secret space. A shady, untamed area may be the perfect spot for a small animal, a group of willow pigs may wander through your vegetable patch or maybe a deer looks through your ornamental grasses.
Willow is lightweight, so sculptures can easily be moved around the garden, which adds interest and allows the lawn to be cut, although large horses are quite heavy as they contain thousands of pieces of willow. The sculptures appear different in various weather conditions, birds may perch on a horse’s ear or a stag’s antlers and at dusk you sometimes wonder if the animals are actually alive.
Jane undertakes commission work for a range of animals including stags, which feature natural antlers and horses in various poses. Willow animals are handcrafted from a natural material, so no two are exactly alike.
When cut and dried willow ranges in colour from almost black to light brown and when the bark is stripped off, the willow is creamy white.