Rea Brook Valley

An ongoing series of paintings and other works responding to the landscape in the Rea Brook Valley in Shrewsbury. The river flows through a ribbon of woodland weaving directly into the town to join the River Severn. New developments of housing and retail parks now encroach and irreversibly alter the character of the landscape.

Work made in response to a walk made with poet, Graham Attenborough, who wrote a poem “from non-place to another” as part of our collaboration for the Encounters project in 2019:

Roller (Rea Brook)
Roller (Rea Brook)
from non-place to another
we watch an urban Lidl land
its shapeless form must stand
for something
(perhaps - in time - this corrugated prefab too will join our graded lists of heritage)
across its Tarmac black
we dodge traffic
find grass beneath our boots
ignore irate golfers
finally reach the river
a course that's run forever
before ancient bank-paths were even trod
from hamlet farms to spire-topped town
whatever once was
sleeps in shadows now
(all industry grows back to wild)
but even here strange signs and symbols testify
conurbation's belt still widens
smearing green to brown
these webs of shortcut threads
become contested ground
subject to planning
not hard to imagine
see how far we've come
from place to places hidden
under shiny brick boxes
'affordable' housing
with more than adequate parking
glib lawn and tacked-on shed
fenced off for barbies and trampoline Sundays
good access to ring-roads
(once all towns were new)
it doesn't matter
not anymore

Graham Attenborough (GKA) 2019

Exhibited Paintings

Reverse acrylic skin paintings shown in the Lawn and Meadow exhibition at Participate Contemporary Artspace, 2018: