The timeless art of basket weaving is well spread around the world and has resisted for so many years in history. This craft requires to weave pliable and natural materials together to create the form you are seeking. Inspired by this technique, a British sculptor, known under the name of Anna & The Willow, has modernized the timeless craft. English-grown rods of willow were used to build her amazing nature-inspired sculptures.
The first time Anna worked with willows was 10 years ago when she took a sculpting course on the weekends. She said, “Working with a natural material opened up a new world and I consequently went on to learn the different techniques of basketry. I enjoy using the traditional skills of basketry and adding my own flare to the process.” The artist is really good with the traditional technique, since she does a variety of willow basket and small gifts, but her latest work, the life-size sculpture, brings the traditional technique to a higher level. Each one of her outdoor piece is planned in the first place with hand-drawn sketches. Then they are shaped uniquely with steel frame, before being wrapped with layers of willow rods, letting their inspiring forms appear.One of her 9-foot tall sculpture, titled The Huntress of Skipton Castle Wood, represents a woman shooting a bow and arrow. She’s incorporated into the environment so well that we can actually believe she could come to life from the forest floor at any moment. Other sculptures depict life sized animals, such as a stag and a horse. Them too look so real, frozen in time, watching the surroundings.
Here is how the British sculptor creates her life-size artworks.
She first planned every piece with hand-drawn sketches before being shaped in unique steel frames.
Anna then wraps them with layers of interwoven willow rods, revealing their inspiring forms.
Wisely placed in the nature, they look like they have grown from the forest floor.
If you want to see more of her amazing working take a look at her Instagram page. You can also discover the world of willow craft by joining the artist’s workshops at her studio in North Yorkshire, England.