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By Walter Bailey

Walter Bailey explores charcoal, its historical relevance to the Greensand Way and how this material has supported individuals and industries enabling the shaping of copper, bronze, glass and iron. For his Xylem bench, he examines charcoal under the microscope and makes enlarged studies of these to inform his intuitive approach of carving directly out of oak.

As part of the project, Walter ran workshops with the local secondary Woolmer Hill School. There art students, learned all about their local landscape and about the xylem vessels that run through plants and trees bringing water and nutrients. They worked alongside Walter creating giant charcoal studies and learned about his practise as a sculptor.

Plan your visit

Xylem can be found at The Devil’s Punchbowl, Hindhead. National Trust Car Park, Dysons Drove, Hindhead GU26 6AG. From the Car Park, take the route towards Gibbet Hill and the bench is on the right before the main viewpoint. Grid Ref: SU900359.
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With thanks to the Mittal Foundation

As part of the Inspiring Views programme, Graham Dowdall created a site-specific soundtrack for each location. You can download this track to listen to at Gibbets Hill.

Solve et Coagula, Walter Bailey, 2012

Walter Bailey

Walter Bailey has works in private and corporate collections in the UK, USA, Guernsey, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Japan, and Australia. He works predominantly in Oak and English Redwood, carving intricate patterns using hand tools, chainsaws and fire. A lover of nature, Bailey works in an outdoor studio with an abundance of nature around him.