LHC has been working with Plymouth based artist, Keith Harrison, following his award of the Jerwood Open Forest Commission in 2016.
The Jerwood Open Forest Commission is a collaboration between Jerwood Charitable Foundation and Forestry Commission England with the support of Arts Council England, and is a major commission for artists making work for a forest context. It is part of a national programme supporting visual arts practice and working with early career artists to commission and present new work.
Keith Harrison’s proposal, entitled Joyride, was for a work set in Cannock Chase Forest in the West Midlands. His idea pays an ambiguous homage to the local car industry at Longbridge, his own childhood growing up nearby and his family’s history of working at the Longbridge plant.
The work proposed building a full scale replica of the last Rover model, the Rover 75, from plywood and locally sourced clay, which is one of Keith’s primary materials. The replica car was then to be launched from a ten metre high ramp built from local forest thinnings.
The replica car was crafted in collaboration with Anthony Tovey using a traditional clay modelling process. Tovey once worked at the Longbridge plant, and built car prototypes using this once commonplace technique.
Click to read the fascinating background to the Jerwood Open Forest Commission, an interview with Keith and his thinking behind Joyride.
The team at LHC’s Plymouth studio have worked with Keith for some time and contributed to the Joyride project by developing a 3D Revit model of the ramp. The computerised model helped to visualise the design created by Keith and the project engineers, Cambridge Architectural Research Design, and was subsequently used for construction and take off purposes.
The car was successfully launched at dusk on the 30th September. The ramp and car will remain in-situ for a short period before being dismantled and the timber recycled.
See images of the event by photographer and filmmaker, Hydar Dewachi.
Watch a short film of the ramp under construction …and watch the moment of launch.
(All photography and film copyright is the property of Hydar Dewachi).