Something special …

I’ve already sung the praises of the Pool House Pop-Up Gallery and Shop at Fresh Air this year, but Miranda brought to my attention a rather special piece being showcased there.

Simon Ryder, who originally trained as a zoologist before turning to the world of art, incorporates a wide range of technologies in his exploration of hidden or invisible aspects of the natural world, by showing a “different perspective” to “deepen our engagement and so respect for nature”. From this we knew Simon, and his zoological background, fitted the ‘Birds and Bees’ Pool House theme perfectly. In response to the theme he proposed transforming birdsong he’d been working on into 3D landscapes on the computer. Then to reveal these “landscapes” he used sub-surface engraving, a technique of placing an engraved shape inside a block of crystal glass. This, he believed, would allow the observer to look through the landscapes and would also let light reflect on their surfaces. Each bird song has it’s own unique topography and creates beautiful valleys and hills – elements that represent the pitch and volume of the bird’s song.


The end result of this research and proposal was a tryptic of songs engraved each into a glass block. These fine art, abstract pieces are beautiful and what they represent is really captivating. The landscapes are delicate and really capture the bird’s song in a visual way, showing the falls and rises of the bird song. It’s a great, imaginative take of the ‘Birds and Bees’ theme, being less obvious but much more mysterious and entrancing.

Simon works in locations throughout the UK and in Germany, both individually and as part of the artist group artNucleus.

His tryptic is one of the really special pieces at the Pool House Gallery/Shop and would create an interesting art piece (and talking point!) in any house. So we recommend coming to have a look, and maybe even purchasing, these gorgeous “songscapes”, especially if you are a bird enthusiast.