The Lark over the Sussex Weald from Devils Dyke
‘The Lark over the Sussex Weald from Devils Dyke’.
Panoramic format. Print size 124 x 30.5 cm approx. Signed print from a limited edition of 100. From original ink drawing to which I apply colour digitally. Printed on fine art paper using archival inks.
Painters and poets have historically celebrated this view, it comes to my mind the poem High Flight. Poem by John Gillespie Magee
‘Up, up the long, delirious burning blue
I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark, or ever eagle flew —
And, while with silent, lifting mind I’ve trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.’
This print depicts Devils Dyke, a geographical formation from the Ice age; it is England’s deepest and widest dry valley nearly a mile long. Described by Constable as ‘the grandest view of the World. The view I portray looks down onto the Sussex Weald confined by the South and in the distance the North Downs and even the Isle of Wight that can be seen on clear days.
The summer or 2019, one clear day I sat on the grass in this very spot when I heard it first, a lark. Instinctively i found myself looking up scrutinising the sky to subsequently find it, up there, in the air singing its defiant rather loud tune.
Can you spot the two larks in this print? As it happens in nature you will have to put some effort to find them. Larks in Mythology and literature have several meanings, they stand for daybreak as in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 29 “Like to the lark at break of day arising. From sullen earth sings hymns at heaven’s gate; ..”