Monday, 10 November 2014

Blood Swept Lands, Every Man Remembered and Who Are You?

Hope and I visited London today.

Hope wanted to see the poppies at
before their final day of display tomorrow.
Grant and I saw them a few weeks ago.

Since Grant and I visited
the number of poppies 'planted' has
increased greatly.

In fact the final poppy of 888,246 will
be symbolically planted tomorrow, 
11th November,
by the artist responsible for the installation, 
Paul Cummins.
(Edit: it was actually a 13 year old army cadet who
placed the final poppy).

There are now very personal
tributes and messages attached to the railings.

They are so moving.

It was VERY busy there today,
but even with so many thousands of people
trying to view the spectacle, 
the atmosphere was still charged with emotion
and voices were hushed and respectful.

Is it just me or have there been less
people wearing poppies this year?

We then hopped on the tube and went to
Trafalgar Square.  We wanted to see this chap,
'Every Man Remembered'
created by artist Mark Humphrey.

The Royal British Legion commissioned
the artwork to commemorate the centenary of
the First World War. The soldier stands 10' tall
and every couple of minutes the poppies,
representing the soldier's comrades,
fly around the soldier, together again.

He will be in Trafalgar Square
 until the 16th November,
after which he will go on tour around the UK.

We then went to 
to see the artwork created by
Grayson Perry 
to accompany his brilliant television series,

This is a fascinating programme 
in which Grayson explores the identities
of people from diverse backgrounds and
experiences, and then creates a
portrait, in the form of a pot, sculpture, tapestry
or painting.  He very cleverly scratches below
the surface of the presented veneer and 
discovers the truth of the individual.

There are 14 portraits and it was really
interesting to see them up close.
The exhibition is free and is open until
the 15th March 2015.

We had such a lovely day, and it was
a much needed break from the madness of both
Hope and Luke applying for University;
What sadist invented the Personal Statement
on the UCAS application form?!



Terri Corona said...

Thanks so much for sharing your day - I'd so love to have seen it all myself, but I'll take seeing it through your eyes!

misteejay said...

The Tower with its sea of poppies is amazing; isn't it.
I work at Stratford and it has been noticeable that there have been fewer poppy sellers on the Underground than usual, although for a week we did have 3 tables in the main part of the station. What I have noticed though is the number of folk who have bought crystal poppies - there have been some fabulous ones on peoples coats.
Toni xx

Virginia said...

Another fitting post for today!

Carmen said...

Another great day. Thanks for posting this Jo.

I bought a lapel pin poppy in the end as kept forgetting to attach the paper one I bought, Ruby bought a rubber bracelet which she hasn't taken off, not even for bed - I think there are so many more ways to buy them now that not so many are buying the paper poppy. I know the huge stall in Morrisons always seemed crowded when we were there... got to be a good thing.

As for UCAS. Ugh. Devvie wanted to be applied by now but the school told her to hold off as they were going to run workshops... which they are only just getting around to.

missy k said...

Lovely post Jo

Karen x

Paper rainbow said...

I bought two of the ceramic poppies as I am not able to see them in situ. What a moving tribute. UCAS...what happy memories. Stick at it its worth it in the end :)

Linda Kunsman said...

It must have been so touching and amazing o see all of this in person. How wonderful you all were able to see such a glorious tribute in the city! You're about the 4th blogger I visited today that went to see this and shared pics. I would love to have been there too!

Monica said...


Eileen said...

The sea of poppies is a very powerful image, I would have loved to have seen it.

Miss Iowa said...

Hi! I wish I could have seen the poppy installation in person. So moving. I don't think many people under the age of 60 (or maybe 50 in a stretch) in the U.S. know what the poppies signify, unless they're current military. It's too bad.