When we shot the last Futurescope 'Skep Head' we had been thinking more about the image of the traditional beehive or skep woven from coils of straw and the way in which when Paton's and Baldwin's owned this site they had used this image (in much the same way as the Co-operative has) as a symbol and emblem of industry as if the hive itself were by metaphorical extension a factory or even a society in which the hierarchies of role and function were imposed. I have blogged about this before so I won't do it again. It was also largely about the disconnection between the handmade and agricultural and the machined and designed environment in which people work at Lingfield Point.
As well as the skep 'helmet' we used in this picture we also commissioned two skeps to resemble as closely as possible the shape and form of the Paton's & Baldwin's logo. In an unstructured hive like this the bees make honeycomb that hangs in layers from the top where the queen sits and which eventually fills the skep. Because the skep was circular we had the idea that if bees made honey in it we might use the upturned skep in Futurescope. One thing was clear we wanted this to be a simple picture: Just basically of bees.
We discussed the project with Colin who keeps the bees at Lingfield Point and he agreed to try keeping the skep hive alongside the traditional box hives. Colin who knew very little about skeps did some research into it and found this fantastic film “Heathland Beekeeping”. The first in the series can be seen here:
|David Chubb Beekeper/Skepmaker|
Thanks to all at Marchday especially John Orchard and his staff and for this image Colin Hinde and the selection of friends who loan kit and expertise to make things happen Quondam, David Chubb, Smoky Jo, John Hayes at Service Graphics and Neil Cruikshank.