Hew Locke

Hew Locke  –  Adrift

As part of the Cultureship suite of 5 interlinked projects for the Thames Festival, Hew Locke sited a large-scale sculptural installation in the mariners’ chapel of All Hallows by the Tower.  Adrift comprises a twelve foot painted boat, embellished with plastic flowers and assorted trinkets, which took its place in the light-filled Mariner’s Chapel alongside the other votive boats and historical memorials.

Located within sight of the Upper Pool of London and adjacent to Trinity House, All Hallows is the oldest church in the City of London, one with strong links to the waterman and shipping industry of London and which houses the Memorial Book for “those lost at sea with no known grave.”

Adrift is a monument to the “small” disasters, which loom large in the personal and family lives of lost sailors and passengers, but do not get the media attention.  A memorial to the unknown sailor. The piece evokes the final journey over the River Styx, Viking funeral boats, or Ancient Egyptian funerary barques.  Locke also imagines this boat as having been on a long journey, lost and abandoned up a jungle river, time has passed it by and nature is slowly taking over.