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'New Beginnings' by Luke Jerram

‘New Beginnings’ with Luke Jerram


The artist Luke Jerram asked me to work with him to create a new piece in 2022, to be installed at Ashton Court in Bristol. It is called ‘New Beginnings’.

The project was initiated, designed and directed by Luke; I sourced the materials, gave technical advice, carved and assembled the sculpture and helped with its installation.

Luke Jerram and Alistair park with 'New Beginnings', a sculpture installed in Ashton court Bristol in 2022

The carving, made using redwood timber that was sourced locally, represents a seed into which visitors are invited to hammer coins and make a wish. The idea is based on ‘wishing trees’; a tradition where usually fallen trees or stumps have coins hammered into them by passers-by for luck. Here is a photo of an actual wishing tree near Uley in Gloucestershire;

wishing tree near Uley in Gloucestershire

On his website, Luke Jerram said “I love idea of a seed: as a capsule of information and an object of potential that contains everything inside, a plant needs to grow. I hope the public enjoy interacting with this new sculpture and it acts as a capsule for their hopes, dreams and imagination!”

After a month, over a thousand coins had been hammered into the sculpture by visitors!