Image: Candela, 2012. Located at Bishops Palace moat walk
For the Swans of Wells project in 2012, Fiona worked as an artist-in-residence at All Hallows Prep School to decorate one of the large Swan sculptures provided by the project. It was sponsored by All Hallows.
Pupils visited Fiona in the foyer where she set up base, helping in small groups to source materials and add to the artwork. The work developed over a month. Pupils were given the task to name the swan, and Candela was the final choice. Candela means Candle in Latin; it features in the All Hallows motto: ‘Sancto cuique sua candela’ (for every saint there is a candle (light)). Now permanently installed in the grounds of All Hallows, children regularly play around it.
The Swan has a flame-like quality in its meandering painted lines, colours and luminous objects. These are superimposed by a 3d layer of glued colourful, recycled wires and other found materials. Parts are built up with collected objects from the surrounding area – bells, coins, nails, old tools, feathers, bottle tops, bones, horseshoes, springs, bolts. The recycled objects were collected and created by the children and Fiona.
The process was labour-intensive. ‘I texturised the surface prior to sticking on the objects (all individually cleaned/de-greased), then sanded, primed and finally painted in between all the 3d elements’. Fiona
The giant 5ft swan sculptures, each of which represents a year of the Queen’s 60 year reign, were on public display in an art trail around Wells and the surrounding Somerset area from June to September 2012, as a public charity fund-raising event. The event drew thousands of visitors of all ages to the city. At the end of the summer, the giant flock was sold at the ‘Swansong’ charity auction. All Hallows purchased Candela.