Over 82,000 people of all ages from Derbyshire and further afield, have already visited the iconic Poppies: Weeping Window sculpture at Derby Silk Mill between its opening and Sunday 25th June.
For anyone who has yet to visit, Weeping Window is taken from the installation Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red – poppies and original concept by artist Paul Cummins and installation designed by Tom Piper. The installation was originally at HM Tower of London in 2014 where 888,246 poppies were displayed, one to honour every death in the British and Colonial forces of the First World War. The installation was by Paul Cummins Ceramics Limited in conjunction with Historic Royal Palaces and marked the centenary of the outbreak of war in 1914. Poppies: Weeping Window now forms part of the 14-18 NOW arts touring programme which aims to prompt discussion about the First World War and its impact.
The stunning sculpture is a cascade of several thousand handmade ceramic poppies which pour from the Silk Mill tower windows to the ground below.
Everyone from school children to those who can remember more recent wars have been taking an interest in the sculpture and it’s been quite a talking point for the city.
Recent visitors to the sculpture have been sharing their views and photos on social media, for many, it has been a thought-provoking experience.
“A beautiful reminder, we should never forget x” – Hazel Parry
“The poppies look gorgeous on the site of the world’s first factory” – Karen O’Rawe
“Got to see this wonderful spectacle” – David Yeomans
“Ceramic Poppies @ the Silk Mill are just beautiful” – Meghan Linscott
“Looks spectacular” – Nikki Storer
Horizons Special Education Needs Sixth Form students recently visited the sculpture and were clearly moved, leaving many powerful comments on a dedicated exhibition wall in Derby Silk Mill.
These are some of the comments;
‘The window looks like Rapunzel’s hair – trying to pull the soldiers up to safety.’
‘The window looked like soldiers could climb up to a place to keep them safe.’
‘They made me think of soldiers from lots of wars including the civil war, it made me feel proud that it was designed in Derby’
‘I was impressed and they made me feel happy. Every time I see poppies it reminds me of people that died in the wars’
‘It was interesting to learn that each petal was for a person in the war that didn’t come back, they died to keep us safe.’
Jill Brewin, a member Horizons staff commented: ‘The whole area was so busy with people taking photos of the amazing site of the Weeping Window’.
Poppies: Weeping Window will be at Derby Silk Mill 8.00am to 6.00pm until Sunday 23rd July. Admission is free.
Photo by Graham Commons