Mynheer Art

Nicholas Mynheer
Beggar's Roost
4 Ventfield Cottages
Oxford UK
OX33 1AP

01865 351340

site: creativeedge


Added 18th July, 2022

 18th July 2022

Driving through the Thetford Forest after visiting old friends in Norfolk I suddenly thought that it would be nice to call on another old friend, a sculpture I produced in 1999 for the W.E.R.E Trust to celebrate the new millennium. The sculpture, based on Thomas Traherne's 'Salutation' poem was dedicated to the memory of a young boy, Thomas Marshall. The sculpture looks up to the east, to the rising sun and the Hope of Resurrection. Resonating with Traherne's poem it is the joyous acknowledgement of the wonder of Creation that might occur as a young child or perhaps again in the Autumn of Life. 

In the 20 or so years since I last saw the sculpture the trees have grown immeasurably, a new woodland path cut and what was green lawn turned to meadow. It was as if the very landscape had revolved around the Polestar-like sculpture. The stone had worn and weathered over the years but, like an old friend not seen for decades, recognition was immediate. I've added a photo of it to the Sculpture gallery.

My dear friends Eric Southworth and Nicholas Clapton reintroduced me to another old friend, my 1989 painting of 'The Sower' (which I've added to my painting gallery). Having bought it recently at auction they presented it to me. It was like a sudden unexpected meeting with a dear old friend; total surprise spangled with recollections of times gone by.



Added 18th May, 2022

 18th June 2022

Over the last years a number of people (sometimes families) have been attempting to seek sanctuary in the UK. Whether driven by the hope of a better economic life or to escape their own war torn country the short journey across the English Channel is the  final part of their journey. It is also perhaps the most dangerous.

My sculpture ' Boat People' is such a family attempting to cross the English Channel. It is also The Holy Family on the flight to Egypt as well as 'Our Saviour Christ and His Lady' sailing into Bethlehem on Christmas Day in the morning.

Added 23rd April, 2022

 23rd April 2022

Yesterday my three stained glass windows were dedicated in the chapel of Regent's Park College, Oxford University. Based on The Creation, Ministry and Revelation they were lovingly made by Steven & David Cowan (who made my Southwell Minister Great War memorial window).

An image of The Creation Window has been added to the Glass Gallery with others to follow. It was the joyous culmination of a lengthy project started quite some years ago. The triptych of windows celebrate the Baptist tradition and history of the college. It was a huge delight to have worked both with the college and on the designs.

Added 2nd March, 2022

 2nd March 2022

Finally my painted diptych dedicated to St James was installed and dedicated on Monday 28th February in The Chapel of St. James, The Community of The Resurrection, Mirfield Priory UK.

Images have been added to my Painting Gallery section. In the left hand panel we see James (and his brother John) called to be 'Fishers of Men'. The Right hand panel depicts his sacrifice. As I looked upon this panel during the dedication service I realised how apposite the symbolism was for this particular moment in time with the brutality of James' death echoed in the violence in Ukraine: Herod Agrippa and the dictator Vladimir Putin wielding the executioners sword. But in spite of such evil the Hands of God reach down to James. Love will ultimately triumph.

It occurred to me that that my painting' Mary embraces Judas' Mother' might well be re-titled 'Ukrainian mother and Russian mother embrace'.

Added 8th January, 2022

8th January 2022

I've just put a painting on the Painting gallery of Sara la Kali, Patron saint of the Romani people. The origins of Sara la Kali (or Black Sarah) are steeped in mystery but tradition tells us that she was an Egyptian servant of the three Marys. Mary Magdalene, Salome and Mary the mother of James arrived in France as missionaries. Saint Sara helped them land their small boat on the Southern French shore.

Her centre of veneration is Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer in the Camargue region of Southern France. 

Added 4th December, 2021

 4th December 2021

Christmas hath a darkness

Brighter than the blazing noon'      Christina Rossetti


Each year I produce a painting based on the Christmas story, though not necessarily in chronological order. This year I finally gathered the courage to deal with a theme that might have been easier to avoid; The Massacre of The Innocents.

I combined it with that extraordinary moment when Joseph, warned in a dream, gathers up his family and escapes to Egypt.  See Gallery section for 'Get up, and escape to Egypt'.

In a maelstrom of slashing blades the children of Bethlehem are brutally slain by Herod's men as they search for the Christ Child.

One child's raised arms foretell the sacrifice of the Crucifixion. Even Nature itself recoils in horror of the savagery.

The Angel of The Lord urges Joseph to, 'Get up, take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt.'   Matthew 2 v.13

The Angel shelters them, hiding them under his great wings. Even the palm trees try to conceal them in the darkness of their shadows. The newborn Christ Child, who cannot be in shadow, is bathed in the Light of Hope.

As with all birth the Christ Child is delivered amidst blood and pain.

The very world He created churns and writhes to be delivered of Him.

Added 26th October, 2021

 26th October 2021

After three years of patiently waiting my windows for the Chapel of Regent's Park College, Oxford University are in production. The Creation Window, The Ministry Window and The Revelation window will, all being well, be installed by Eater 2022.

I'm currently painting a diptych for The Community of The Resurrection, Mirfield, Yorkshire, UK dedicated to St James.

I've just finished painting my historic Romany Bow Top Caravan. Facing west, it looks out at the setting sun across Otmoor. I've put a few photographs in the Painting section of the Gallery.

Added 24th December, 2020

Christmas Eve 2020

With church services cancelled over Christmas (for the first time I can recall) we lit a bonfire on Christmas Eve in our garden which overlooks the open countryside of Otmoor.

We gathered round the blazing fire and holding lanterns aloft slowly, one after another, read the Nine Lessons from Genesis to The Gospel of St. John.

In the intense red heat of the fire and the blue black chill of the frozen air we were immersed in the deep magic of Christmas.

'Christmas hath a darkness

Brighter than the blazing noon,

Christmas hath a chillness

warmer than the heat of June...' Christmas Eve by Christina Rossetti

Under the vast star spangled sky the orange embers spat, hissed and rose Heavenward, like the prayers of two thousand years.

Added 25th November, 2020

 25th November 2020


The Annunciation to The Shepherds

For the last few year I have produced an image connected to the Christmas story. this year I decided to paint a theme I hadn't looked at for some years, The Annunciation to the Shepherds. I wonder why it was necessary for God to terrify the Shepherds. It seemed to me that God meets us where we are much as Philip meets the Ethiopian. God appears in a way that is best suited. Perhaps, for working shepherds, hardy by nature, not easily intimidated by the raging thunderstorm, only the Heavenly Host itself would serve. 

'Even then you frighten me with dreams and terrify me with visions..'  - The Book of Job  7 v:14  

 Perhaps like Job, the Shepherds underwent this baptism of fear in order to emerge transfigured, much as God blinded Saul on the Damascus Road in order to enable him to truly see.

Added 22nd October, 2020

 22nd October 2020

The Corpus of Christ carved in 2010 is now installed in the Church of St Giles, Oxford, UK. Bordered by two Roman pillars it sits in a niche in the South part of the chancel.

In many ways the sculpture, like other corpus sculptures I've produced, is the result of a visit decades ago to the Museum of Religious art in Dijon. There, I saw an extraordinarily beautiful medieval corpus carved in Limewood. It's arms like the cross had long gone, perhaps broken off or rotted away.  Like that sculpture mine has no cross and what hints at arms are now raised in triumph. Cross, arms, crown of thorns and loincloth are all gone - all that remains is Christ. Jesus was stripped naked for crucifixion; naked as a newborn ... but we only see 'nakedness' because we are fallen.

As I carved this figure words from Bach's St John Passion came to mind -

My precious Saviour, let me ask thee,

Since thou upon the cross wast fastened

And said thyself, ' It is fulfilled',

Am I from dying made free?

Can I through this pain and dying

The realm of Heaven inherit?

Is all the world's redemption here?

Thou can'st in pain, indeed, say nothing;

But thou dost bow thy head

And sayest in silence, 'Yes'

Added 14th October, 2020

14th October 2020

Finally after two years my set of windows are installed in Studley Priory charting the extraordinary history of the house since it was built in the early 12th century. They were engraved by Davia Walmsley to my designs.

While I wait to install my Mother and Child sculpture at the Convent of St Mary, Wantage, Oxfordshire I've been working on a painted triptych (or at least a set of three paintings) based on the Blessed Virgin Mary. I've always been fascinated by the different ways she is referred to and decided to explore these visually. The first two of these images are now in the Galleries section - 'The Enclosed Garden' and 'The Mystic Rose'. 'The Fountain Sealed' is currently underway.

Added 23rd July, 2020

 23rd July 2020

One of the side effects of this extraordinary time of Pandemic has been to give artists a sense a space; a time, remarkably, not of constraint but rather of freedom. Artist friends have found themselves either responding artistically to the effects of the Pandemic or producing work that they felt enabled finally to do so as a result a period of time where normal constraints no longer apply. 

For months I have been carving my, slightly larger than life-size, Mother and Christ Child for St Mary's Convent, Wantage, UK.  I've also had the time to produce work that both responds, comes out of, the Pandemic and work that the Pandemic has given me the time to do.

The Return of The Dove (see Sculpture gallery) is a direct response to the Covid 19 Pandemic or more specifically the 'coming' out of it. The Pandemic seems to me like The Great Flood. All corners of the world have been affected. here we see Noah welcoming the return of the Dove as we (full of Hope) see the waters subside.

I've also found time to produce a small sculpture that I've wanted to make for a number of years - In Memoriam C.S. (see the Sculpture gallery).  

Some years ago I saw a heart rending documentary about the Factor 8 infected blood controversy and the dreadful plight of those individuals infected with HiV as a result of it. Among them was a young boy who tragically died aged 7. The image of this beautiful little boy, looking remarkably like my own son at the same age with a great sweep of blond hair, has haunted me ever since. Desperately sick, sat in bed, his parents were not even being able to touch him because of the pain it caused. He had asked his father why he had to suffer. I had sketched the image all those years ago and only now have felt able, both time-wise and emotionally, to produce this small memorial.

Carved in the most beautiful stone I know, Caen stone, we see the dying boy held lovingly in the arms of his father, who is also God the Father. For me it is a little prayer in stone carved with as much love, beauty and care that I muster but it is still not beautiful enough. 

Added 5th April, 2020

Palm Sunday     5th April 2020

Since Christmas I've been working, almost every day, on a large limestone sculpture of Mary and The Christ Child for the Convent of St. Mary, Wantage, Oxfordshire, UK. Like all the larger projects I work on, it has become all consuming; both physically and emotionally.

I'm aware that the current pandemic has seen the lives of so many changed enormously. Many now find themselves working from home, furloughed or unemployed. For some, sadly, this time has been dominated by illness or even death. It seems surreal that my life continues, largely, unchanged; working as I do in an almost solitary state.

This week I read about Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab. He was 13 years old when he succumbed to and died of Coronavirus. He died completely alone. His family were not allowed to be at his bedside. In hospital he would have been surrounded by masked and gowned medical staff (though he may well have been unconscious and on a ventilator). The thought of him dying alone, and just a boy, haunted me. 

Then, as I carved the Christ child held aloft by his mother Mary I realised that Ismail was never truly alone; he was held aloft in the loving hearts of his family and the loving hands of God. 

As I continue to work on this sculpture and when I eventually stand back (God willing) and look at the finished work outside the Convent of St Mary I shall ever think of Ismail Mohamed Abdulwahab.


Added 5th April, 2020
Added 7th February, 2020

 7th February 2020

Since last Autumn I've been working on a large series of windows for a Tudor Manor House. 15 engraved panels chart the history of the house since it was built sometime in the very early 1100's. Apart from The Church owning it up until The Reformation it has only ever had 4 owners!

I'm also working on a very large sculpture in English Limestone of the Virgin and Christ Child to stand outside St Mary's Convent in Wantage. The convent is in the process of having the most extraordinarily beautiful extension built, designed by Hall McKnight. I'd forgotten how brutally hard carving can be, especially working outside this time of year.

Added 18th January, 2019


Traherne wrote: 'You never enjoy the world aright till the sea itself floweth in your veins, till you are clothed with the heavens and crowned with the stars'.

Added 17th January, 2019

10th January 2019

Sister Wendy Beckett

The Christmas card I received this year from Sr Wendy Beckett will be the last. She died on Boxing Day.

It was as if I sensed something because on December 26th after I'd typed 'St Stephen's Day' on this blog I could write no more.

Yesterday Roger Wagner and I drove to the Carmelite Monastery in Quidenham, Norfolk for Sr Wendy's Requiem Mass. It was a beautiful and joyous service; a true celebration of Sr Wendy.

Amidst clouds of incense the assembled sisters, gathered around the coffin, sang,

'May the angels lead you into Paradise, the martyrs receive you at your coming, and bring you into the holy city, into Jerusalem. May a choir of angels welcome you'

The small congregation then processed, behind the sisters, down to the graveside while two sisters rang a solemn toll on the great monastery bell. It was powerful, moving and deeply humbling at the same time.

Back in the convent parlour reminiscences of Sr Wendy were joyfully shared while eating cake made by her dear friend Delia Smith (who gave the first reading).

In Fr Stephen Blair's homily he had recounted an episode when he had been driving Sr Wendy to the hospital. She had said that she hoped that she would be forgotten. He hadn't questioned her, instinctively knowing that she would always rather simply point to God (much like John the Baptist).

Forgive us Sr Wendy for we can never forget you.

Sr Wendy was a good friend over many years as she also was to Roger (Wagner), Mark (Cazalet), Richard (Kenton Webb) and Tom (Denny).

Added 17th January, 2019


Having now installed the St Kenelm's Reredos I'm working on a series of glass projects a window for a church, a set of college chapel windows and a set for a private Manor house.

Added 26th December, 2018
26th December 2018
Boxing Day - St Stephen's Day
Added 12th October, 2018

12th October 2018

A year to the day I started, I have just completed the five mosaic panels depicting the life (and death) of St Kenelm for The Church of St Kenelm, Church Enstone, Oxfordshire, UK. Last Easter I visited the Orsoni factory in Venice to choose the glass smalti with which to make the panels. Initially I felt that visiting the factory would just add an interesting dimension to the project but I quickly realised that it was a crucial element to the process. Seeing how the smalti was made and meeting the people involved in the process affected the way I engaged with the work. The five panels, probably finished, now sit in my studio before their installation into an oak reredos in the church later in November. As a cooked joint of meat or a pudding needs to sit and rest or dough needs to prove, so I feel the need for the panels to quietly rest, for the first time in line together. This gives me time to see if they are truly finished.

Added 13th February, 2017


Having just completed a commissioned painting I painted its title on the reverse, 'Blind' Bartimaeus. I put the word 'Blind' inparenthesis because Bartimaeus was only physically blind. As Jesus left Jericho, along with a crowd of followers, he passed Bartimaeus who cried out to him. When Jesus asked of him what he wanted, Bartimaeus replied 'to be able to see'. Jesus tells him that his faith has healed him. In my painting (see Gallery painting section) I painted the Glory of God, coming from Heaven through Jesus to Bartimaeus, in yellows and oranges. I painted this same colour into the open eye of Bartimaeus because though he was blind of sight he could truly see God. Jesus 'heals' him giving him physical sight, enabling him to see what the Maker had made as well as he could see the Maker. The figure to the right of Bartimaeus, in my painting, appears to have no eye, for though he can see Jesus and Bartimaeus he does not see God. It is so often so easy to see what the Maker has made but not the Maker.


Added 27th January, 2017

 27th January 2017


Yesterday, in this quiet little Oxfordshire village, we laid to rest a gentle lady, a woman in life so modest that even in death I cannot write her name for fear that she would blush to be mentioned. 

She loved the countryside; she loved her garden and her cats; she loved the wild birds and above all she loved God. 

For so many years she served as sacristan to our church of St. Barnabas. When Jesus rose from the tomb she was first at the empty tomb preparing the church for the rest of us to celebrate Easter.

The Eucharist was central to her life and her final wish was that her funeral service should be part of it. 

Here in St Barnabas we hold Christmastide until the Feast of Candlemas and so, during the service,  her coffin was placed in the chancel in between the Nativity crib and the sparkling Christmas tree. She rested amongst us as we took communion. After the service we processed into the frozen air and gathered around the grave. As her coffin was gently lowered into the earth and the priest began to speak a breeze beruffl'd Robin, sitting in a tree less than a metre from me and directly overlooking the grave, began to sing. His voice, so clear and insistent, rose above that of the priest until his song seemed to fill the churchyard and his was the only voice. 

In honour of our friend we had prepared the church to be as beautiful as possible with candles and flowers throughout and with the best gold and silver plate... but all the treasures of the world; all the gold and silver of the world; no king or president or money could have bought what God then provided - a tiny Robin to sing the Te Deum in homage to a modest woman.    O, the magnitude of meekness.


Added 24th November, 2016

 24th November 2016

Living, as I do, on the edge of Otmoor I'm always aware of birds preparing for migration. Thousands of Starlings fly weaving and spinning in vast clouds barely above the field in an exuberant curtain call before they set off for warmer climes.

One morning while I was outside carving recently I found a dead Starling lying on the grass. When I picked it up to admire its beautiful spangled plumage I could find neither broken neck or wing and no apparent feather damage. I placed it in the rubbish bin.

During the night I dreamt about the bird. I saw it flying freely with its fellows, curving and sweeping over the fields. Upon waking I hastened to the bin, retrieved the bird and having carefully cleaned it I took it onto Otmoor where I buried him with dignity.


It was a strange coincidence then, that a great friend, Jonathan Stockland, sent me a recent poem of his entitled Migration.




Starlings fly South when winter nears;

their flight turns the skies inside out,

as with shrill cries their parabolas

mold the air in a motion

so fluid it has no resolution,

patterning the horizon in black and white

they move onwards towards the light

of their beckoning destination.

.   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .

Geese and ducks are noisily direct

in their convinced formations,

tacking frayed chevrons of flight

onto a moving sky, like blazons of heraldry,

as they seek with wavering aim

the long miles' test

and claim of those landfalls

of their resting place.

.   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .

We have not the homing instinct of birds;

we are billeted in the land

of the heart's uncertainty,

not knowing what is the travel plan,

or whether to stay, or which way to go.

We wander the long stretches

of the seasons' change and year's turning

without true compass, without natural range.

.   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .   .

In Autumn though, as summer closes,

we do turn our faces towards

the vanishing sun, looking for the one light

to outlast the year's darkening flight;

we do then, as birds do, seeking

a safe haven, so far, so near, found at last

beside us, and within, under the shadow

of wings almost too bright to bear.                            Jonathan Stockland  -  October 2016



Added 12th July, 2016

 12th July 2016

Dedication of the Southwell Mister WWI memorial window on Sunday 10th July at 3.30pm.

The cathedral was filled with hundreds of people, many of whom were serving or retired service men or women.

The service started with the Standard of Reconciliation carried by Bugle Major Kieran Robinson RHR leading a procession of standards through the Nave.

A selection of Great War readings, movingly read, preceded Malcolm Archers Requiem sung by the polished cathedral choir. The Last Post was played by Bugle Major Peter Roebuck on a silver bugle from the Great War (7 Foresters 1917).

With reference to the leaves of Southwell and also my carved plaque underneath the window which depicts an angel catching a falling leaf (soldier), thousands upon thousands of oak leaves fluttered silently down from the roof of the cathedral. An extraordinarily moving and symbolic piece of theatre.

Bishop Stephen Oliver dedicated the window and a wreath was laid beneath it. Then moving to the theme of resurrection Siegfried Sassons Everyone Sang was read before a member of RAF Cranwells College Band played the Reveille on a bugle (much as the angel does at the top of the window).

The congregation sang Blakes Jerusalem followed by the National Anthem.

With powerful symbolism the military flags and standards were processed past the newly dedicated window, through the Nave and out through the great West doors.

In a final nod to the symbolism of the window (in which we see the Cup of Suffering transformed into a mug of beer in celebration of eternal life) beer and sandwiches was served in the North transept of the cathedral.

The iconography and themes of the window had been reflected in the service itself.

It was a truly moving celebration; in many ways an extraordinary piece of theatre that went from the spine tingling Last Post; the hearty singing of Jerusalem by the hundreds assembled to utter stillness when one could only hear the faintest rustlings of thousands of falling fluttering leaves.

Im sure that all who were present will never ever forget that service. 

Added 15th April, 2016

15th April 2016

It was slightly nerve-racking, yesterday morning, walking across the sward to Southwell Minster to view for the first time my newly installed World war One memorial window. For though, in one sense, I had been living with it since its commission back in February 2014 the sheer size of the window meant that at no point could we ( myself, Steve and Dave Cowan glaziers) work on the window in its entirety either in my studio or in their glass studio. Though the Islip glass screen is even larger the monochromatic nature of that project seemed to make it easier to envision. Colour is integral in the Southwell window and particularly the way in which it changes/graduates over the panel. 

I was hugely relieved to find, in my opinion anyway, that the window works; that the colours sit happily together and that it fits into its setting, both with the adjacent window as well as the architecture as a whole.

But, and perhaps for the first time ever with a newly installed work, I found it hard to tear myself away from the window and leave the Cathedral. I felt like a parent leaving his/her child on their first day ever at school; knowing that you must go in order to set them free and yet at the same time struggling to do so.

Added 14th March, 2016

 March 14th 2016

The Sarum Cycle was installed today in the Crypt of Canterbury Cathedral along with a series of my 'Passion of Christ' sculptures. I've put an image of The Man of Sorrows in the sculpture gallery. Anthony Gormley's splendid dead Christ (made of medieval nails) hangs from the ceiling behind it.

The exhibition is there until 14th April.

Added 13th May, 2015

13th May 2015


A strange day - both joyous and poignant.

This morning to S. Mary's Convent, Wantage for the Requiem Mass to bid farewell to my dear friend Sr Bridget Mary. I'd known Bridget for more than 20 years.  A multi-talented artist and writer, my two sons will probably best remember Bridget for playing football with them (in full habit) when they were very small.

The first time I met her was in her studio at the convent. She was in full welding gear, in the process of repairing some heating pipes for a visiting plumber before turning back to a metal sculpture she was working on.

More recently I took her up to Mucknell Abbey to deliver a sculpture that she had produced and which they were to install.

She was a larger than life character and I will miss her greatly.

Her grave (in a manicured plain grass lawn at the convent) was one of the most beautiful things I'd ever seen. The earth walls of the grave itself were lined with flowers - May blossom and white roses on the sides and yellow roses at the head all interspersed with greenery. There was something very powerful (and at the same time modest) about the idea of the beautiful flowers being covered by the earth.

This afternoon I sat for Jane Dowling to draw my portrait. Jane is rightly proud of her wonderful garden in Charlton-on-Otmoor. Tall Cowparsley dominates creating a three dimensional garden full of wildlife. As I sat on a chair in a small cleared area outside her studio  bees buzzed around me and a blackbird landed nearby as she sketched me in the dappled sunlight. Though it was as if time stood still I knew that I would remember the moment forever - perhaps a May day that I would always think back on.

Added 25th March, 2015

25th March 2015

Last night saw the second Oxford Lenten music and Art evening. The second half of Arvo Part's extraordinary 'Passio' was performed as well as his haunting Spiegel im Spiegel.

Jonathan Stockland, one of the driving forces of this wonderful of Lenten series, sent me a poem he had written based on my Simon and Jesus sculpture (see sculpture section of my website). It is a very powerful piece capturing in words what I tried to capture in stone.


'Nick Mynheer's Simon and Jesus'

by Jonathan Stockland - March 2015


They do not stand apart, those two;

like conjoint twins,

one leans to the other

as the hate-full,

slanting slab of that cross beam

pins them together from above,

in their shared yoke of love.


Hand on bare shoulder

above the flayed ribs

re-membered in the deep gouges of cloth;

the bare nipple exposed and tender

as the Spirit's dove;

one mouth opens in a gasp of pain,

the other closes his lips in the strength

of His love.


Weathered limestone

washed clean by wind and rain

where the mark of the scourge remains-

the sculptor's tool marks the crime;

both seem utterly involved

in one passion, one in a unity

of person, place and time.

Simon's hand and arm clasp

His shoulder, as they both stare ahead,

inward eyes seeing the cross, above

the bone mound of the dead,

the towering tree of Love.


Their eyes are drawn down in pity

for all the love to be spent

for generations to come;

for the grief of mothers' calls

for dying children in tents

of desperation, and in streets

of demolition, on borders of despair.

In this one embodied moment

is the pain of the world

they share, and take

upon themselves

for Love's sake.                  Jonathan Stockland - March 2015


Added 17th March, 2015

17th March 2015

This weekend I hung the Sarum Cycle of paintings in the wonderful cancel of Michaelhouse in Cambridge.

This evening sees the start of this years Oxford Lent concert series in The Queen's College chapel, Oxford. More than concerts they are meditations on Our Lord's Passion through Art and music. This evening I will exhibit 5 small oil on paper paintings from the series I'm working on currently based on The Life of Mary. They'll be hung in their entirity January 2016 in Southwell Minster. Nottinghamshire.

The three evening concerts are Tuesday 17th March, Tuesday 24th March, Tuesday 31st March - 6.15pm. The music is Arvo Part's 'Passio' and Spiegel im Spiegel along with John Tavener's ' Chant', 'the Hidden Treasure' and 'Svyati'.

I'm a great fan of Tavener's music and perhaps an even greater one of Part's so I'm looking forward to it.

Added 30th January, 2015

30th January 2015  The Feast day of Charles I King & Martyr

Having spent the last three months working on a triptych dedicated to Charles I King & Martyr it was a great delight to finally install the paintings in the private chapel of the extraordinary Studley Priory. I have put a picture of the triptych in my Paintings Gallery section.

Charles Ist visited Studley Priory when he came to watch The Battle of Brill.

Central to the design is the chalice; symbolic of Charles' understanding that the mass should be the central act of worship. It was, of course, his adherence to this truth that turns the chalice into his own 'cup of suffering'.

The joy I experienced in the painting of the triptych was tempered by the increasing awareness of the magnitude of Charles' sacrifice.

Thomas Traherne wrote in his Centuries of Meditation (with 17thc spelling):

The Cross of Christ is a Tree set on fire with invisible flame,

That illuminateth all the world. The Flame is Lov.

The Lov in His bosom who died on it.

In the Light of which we see how to possess all the Things

In Heaven and Earth after his Similitude.

For he that suffered on it, was the Son of GOD as you are:

Tho He seemed a Mortal Man.

To this poor Bleeding Naked Man

Did all the Corn and Wine and Oyl,

And Gold and Silver in the World minister in an invisible Manner,

Even as he was exposed Lying and Dying upon the Cross,

Here you learn all Patience, Courage, Lov,

Contempt of the World, Joy, Penitence...

With whatsoever else is requisit for a Man, a Christian or a King.

Ths man Bleeding here was Tutor to King Charles the Martyr.


I also came across this extraordinarily moving piece of text...

Monday January 29th 1649

It was a day of ineffable sadness for the king when his two children, Princess Elizabeth, 14, and Prince Henry, 9, came from Syon House to St. James' Palace for a short visit to see their father for the last time. The Princess later wrote:

   'He wished me not to grieve and torment myself for him, for that would be a glorious death he should die, it being for the Laws and liberties of this land and for maintaining the true protestant religion. He told me that he had forgiven all his enemies and hoped God would forgive them also, and commanded us and all the rest of my brothers and sisters to forgive them. He bid me to tell my mother that his thoughts had never strayed from her and his love would be the same to the last. He bid commendation to all his friends.......'


At a time when we so often hear the term 'Martyr' the last three months painting have made me dwell on what it truly means to die for your faith.


Added 22nd January, 2015

22nd January 2015

The full sized cartoon for the Great War Window (for Southwell Minster, Cathedral of Nottingham) is now complete and ready for going into production. The next stage is the selection of glass and the making of small trial sections. It was wonderful finally seeing the design full size. The drawing looks huge in my studio though the window in Southwell Minster seems relatively modest.

I've just finished the private commission of a large painted triptych for the chapel of a private Manor house. I'm pleased with how it's turned out. Based on the theme of King Charles I, King and martyr the central panel depicts Christ on the Mount of Olives; the Cup of suffering. This is the moment where Jesus says 'Not my will but yours be done'. Jesus (like Charles) is aware that he must take The cup of suffering and he is aware of its consequences.

I'm about to start working again on a series of very small oil on paper paintings based on the life of The Virgin Mary. These are for an exhibition in Southwell Minster in January 2016 dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

Added 16th December, 2014

16th December 2014 

Our hearts bleed. Two thousands years on and still The Innocents are Massacred.

God bless all those children slaughtered in Peshawar... and have mercy on the Taliban perpetrators; Herod's men.

Added 12th December, 2014

12th December 2014

Presently I'm enjoying working on a large painted Triptych for the private chapel of a Tudor Manor House. Based on the theme of King Charles, King and Martyr and linking Charles' visit to the house the design reflects on the sacrifice of Charles with Christ on the Mount of Olives.

I'm also currently working on the full size cartoon for the Great War Window for Southwell Minster (Nottinghamshire). It's so large I can't quite lay it out on my studio floor. See the glass section of the website for the coloured design as well as the monochrome cartoon on the studio floor. I'm working on this project with Steven and David Cowan (glaziers) of Sutton Coldfield.

Added 1st October, 2014


1st October 2014

Sunday 28th September saw the dedication of the new font cover Roger Wagner and I produced for Iffley Church in Oxford. Having both produced works for the church ( a window by Roger and an Aumbry by me) we decided to collaborate in designing and producing a new font cover. Having designed it together I produced a clay sculpted centre which Davia Walmsley of Daedalian Glass cast beautifully. The surround was made in pewter by A E Williams of Birmingham and the structure was made by Luke Hughes Design. What appears to be a rather small work was hugely complicated but eventually sucessful (I think).

Added 7th July, 2014

7th July 2014

Yesterday afternoon saw the dedication of my two sandblasted windows for The Church of St Christopher, Warden Hill, Cheltenham. It was a truly joyous celebration.

The church is a celebration of glass with ten superb coloured windows by Tom Denny and now the two new monochrome panels either side of the entrance.  

Tom's windows are based on Jesus' parables so I decided to use two more parables in my designs. In the right hand panel we see St Christopher wading through the river (of life) carrying a child - unknown to him the Christ child.

Christ opens his arms to wecome the return of the prodigal son (left hand panel) who is also us. At the same time the left hand panel depicts the parable of the good samaritan.

(see images in Glass section)



Added 29th May, 2014

May 29th  2014 (Ascension Day)

The two sandblasted windows for The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham have now been installed (and dedicated). They were commissioned by two Birmingham Primary Schools: St Margaret Mary Catholic School and Christ The King Catholic School. This was the second window that Christ The King school had commissioned.

What extraordinary schools they are. I met with a group of the children (aged 5 to 11) and we developed the designs between us. Daedalian Glass of Lancashire sandblasted them for me.

Presently Daedalian are casting a sculpted Dove panel that I've produced to be part of a new font cover. I've worked with the artist Roger Wagner to design a new cover for Iffley church in Oxfordshire. Roger produced a new window for the church and I carved a stone Aumbry so we thought that it would be nice to collaborate to produce a new font cover.

I was absolutely delighted to be commissioned to produce a new stained glass window for Southwell Minster in Nottinghamshire to commemorate The Great War. The design is complete and I shall begin working on the window fairly shortly.



Added 17th December, 2013

17th December 2013

Victoria Jones wrote this splendid article about my Islip Glass screen. Her blog is well worth following.

Islip Glass Screen 

the Bishop of Dorchester The Rt Rev'd Colin Fletcher wrote this piece for 'The Door' relating to my Mother & Child sculpture in Beckley Church

Mother and Child

Added 29th November, 2013

29th November 2013

A busy time at the moment. 2 windows designed for a Church on Chetenham and waiting to start production. I'm also working on designs for another two windows for The Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham. Two seperate Primary schools are commissioning the panels. It is extraordinary to be working for such very young patrons!

For the last few weeks I've also been working on a design proposal for a large window for Southwell Minster to commemorate the First World War. I'm on a shortlist of 3 artists for the commission but the subject matter has taken me over. It has been enthralling researching the history of Southwell and The Great War. Many of the reports af the soldiers lives (and deaths) have been so moving that I have found the work both exhilarating and draining at the same time. Of course it would be a huge honour to produce the new window but whatever the eventual choice of artist I feel that it has been a privilege spending time working on the theme. In some very small way I feel that it is a way that I can salute all those who fought; both those who fell as well as those who returned.

Added 21st June, 2013

Summer Solstice

Finally finished carving 'Veroinca wipes the brow of Jesus' (see Sculpture Gallery).

Ever since I first painted this theme when I produced a set of Stations of The Cross for St. Matthew's Church, Birmingham this theme has haunted me. My dear friend Beamont Stephenson explained to me that the title was really a corruption/ development of the term Veronika, or 'true image'/ true icon. Normally the imprint or image of Christ himself appears in the cloth that Veronica uses to wipe Jesus' brow as he struggles on the road to Calvary.

In my sculpture, however, the cloth that Veronica holds has no image on it. Through her selfless action of wiping Jesus' brow she acts for and as Christ - She has become the very image of Christ.

Added 19th April, 2013

19th April 2013

Today the new window for Queen Elizabeth Hospital Chapel, Birmingham was dedicated in the most lovely service. The delightful children of Christ The King Catholic School, Birmingham who instigated the whole project sent along 25 of their fellow pupils to the service. They had the vision to commission the window; raising the funds to pay for it; commissioning it and helping with the development of the design.

In the window the two stretcher bearers wear Christ The King School sweatshirts. - for the children in their vision for this project act as stretcher bearers, bearing the viewers to Christ Himself. I reminded them of the words of St. Teresa of Avila - 'Christ has no hands but Yours'.

This week I was reminded how I see parallels all around me with what I read in the Bible. When I looked upon the image of that smiling happy little boy (called Martin) that was killed this week in the Boston Terrorist attack I immediately saw St. Stephen - a face filled with the light and glory of God; a candle burning brightly against a dark background. God bless that boy.

Added 10th April, 2013

10th April 2013

On Monday had the pleasure of meeting Victoria Jones, a young American visiting Britain with her husband for the first time. Victoria keeps a really fascinating Blog - check it out  http://the 

Today fitted the new glass panel I'd been working on for the Chapel in Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham. This was a very special commission as it was a Primary School (Chrit The King Primary Schhol, Birmingham) that commissioned the piece. It's the first time that I've ever worked for children and they were a great delight to have as patrons! - see an image of the panel on my Glass Gallery. It will be deicated next week when the children will see it for the first time.



Added 13th March, 2013

13th March 2013

It seems to have been a busy Lent in many ways. The series of talks accompanying my Sarum Cycle has now come to a close. Salley Vickers, Sr Frances Dominica, Lord Ian Blair and Lord Richard Harries all took one image from the cycle and talked about it. Each was very different and all were superb speakers. 

The small exhibition of sculpture and painting in the University Church passed happily as did the first night of this Lent's series of Art and Music in The Queen's College Chapel, Oxford University . I exhibited my Simon & Jesus sculpture. The music was four different settings of Psalm 51; settings by Purcell; Kuhnau; Esteves and Gabrielli. Next week the artist showing is Tim Steward and the following week Alison Berrett.

The standard of the performance is always breathtaking and last night was no exception. The acoustic of the chapel suits early music but at the same time demands unbelievably tight and accurate singing and music making.

God was truly glorified last night.

Added 11th February, 2013

11th February 2013 

Last night saw the first of the series of four speakers responding to 'The Sarum Cycle' Passion of Christ paintings currently on show in Christ Church Cathedral. The author Salley Vickers considered the painting of The Last Supper. She was riveting (in fact you could have heard a rivet drop) as she considered  Christ's last supper and the theme of Betrayal.  She spoke about the nature of this meal and its setting and about Judas' betrayal as well as Peter's denial/betrayal of Christ.

It is always wonderful to hear what others read into one's work and strangely moving (if not a little uncomfortable) when someone understands particular ideas that you have carved or painted. It is as if your very soul has been laid bare....'a sword shall pierce your own heart too'

Sometimes it is as if you have known someone forever


Added 5th February, 2013

5th February 2013 

Today I set up 'The Sarum Cycle' (Passion of Christ paintings) in Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford where it will remain until 9th April (see Exhibition section). It will be a focus for a series of 'After Eight' services in the cathedral at 8pm on Sunday evenings, when four prominent people in public life will reflect on one of the paintings:

10th February - Salley Vickers

17th - Sr Frances Dominica

24th February - Lord  Blair of Boughton

3rd March - Lord Harries of Pentregarth

I will lead meditations on The Passion of Christ using the paintings immediately after tyhe 6pm Eucharit on Thursday 21st February and Thursday 14th March


Added 20th December, 2012

20th December 2012

Today I visited Mirfield Priory to check how my Altar looked installed and to double check that the carving was completely finished. As I've only carved the front section at the moment the rest of the altar has been constructed on a temporary basis until I carve the side sections. A stone back and top will then be fitted. Finally the whole will be mortared to the floor removing the gaps that are presently apparent (see images in my Sculpture section).

As I sat, alone, in the vast yet surprisingly warm, expanse of this extraordinary church the silence was broken by a distant yet clarion - clear call of a cock crowing. It could not have been more perfect; the crowing cock - an early symbol of the Resurrection in this place that is dedicated to the Resurrection. The image I've carved on the front of this new Altar depicts one of the Resurrection appearances; The Supper at Emmaus.

Added 21st November, 2012

21st November 2012

Finally finished carving the front panel for the new stone altar for Mirfield Priory in Yorkshire.

The design is based on the Supper at Emmaus. Christ breaks bread and is recogised by those around him. This must have been an extraordinary moment and the various reactions to the realisation that Jesus was once again amongst them is reflected in their faces. We see astonishment; we see quiet acceptance (or could it be plain disbelief) and wee see abject horror (in the face rear right).  

Now, we read the account with the acceptance of hindsight - the actual event must have inspired incredulity, ecstatic excitement and perhaps even terror.

I've put an image of the panel in the Sculpture Gallery

Added 22nd October, 2012

22nd October 2012

A while back I designed a Chasuble for St Matthew's Church, Birmingham. Croft Design of Shropshire have just finished making it and I've posted a photo of it on my 'Painting' Gallery.

Croft Design have done a wonderful job. I'm very pleased with how it's turned out! 

Added 10th October, 2012

10th October 2012:

Having spent the last two months in France I returned to see the House Martins massing on the telegraph wires outside my house preparing for their long flight south to Africa. It's a wonderful sight but one that is always tinged with the sadness that the summer is finally over; a summer in France that was long, dry and very hot.

Missing the Olympics entirely was more than made up for by going to Brands Hatch to watch the Paralmpic cycling and by going to the Mall to watch the Paralympic Marathon running and wheelchair racing. Extraodinary and exciting - the other Olympics could not possibly have compared.

It's strange how after several long term commissions come to a conclusion others seem to appear. I've finally started on the stone Altar for Mirfield Priory; I'm working on designs for a new window for the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and I'm designing a series of large paintings for a church. Alongside these there are several smaller projects that are all at the early design stage. It seems almost like the start of a new year.

Added 22nd June, 2012

22nd June 2012

I've finally finished carving 'The Runner-Up' (Man of Sorrows) and put an image in the Sculpture Gallery. It's for an exhibition to be held in the Bow street Methodist Church, London from 23rd July - 1st September called ' Reaching Beyond'.

This piece is based on the idea of the athlete who, having trained much of his /her life for the Olympics, fails to make the final, perhaps going out in the first round or who perhaps fails to make the Olympic team selection.

To a world obsessed with medal tables and massive expectation placed on those who often a few months before were completely unknown (and often unsupported) anything less than Gold is failure.

I also see this figure as 'The Man of Sorrows', Jesus awaiting execution. Jesus, in the eyes of his disciples, must have seemed the ultimate failure. He who promised to save the Jews; who could save others but could not save himself.

And yet if we look beyond the immediate we see....the athlete who has reached beyond him or herself to achieve a place in the world arena. Similarly if we look beyond the crucifixion we can see, as did Jesus' disciples at the Supper at Emmaus, that Jesus was not the ultimate failure but rather the supreme victor.

Added 21st June, 2012

21st June 2012

You expect Midsummer's Eve to be magical and it has not disappointed me. This morning I installed the New Altar I designed for the Church of St Mary, Kiidlington. It was made by James Binning (of Deep in Wood) and Peter Street.

The design of the Altar is inspired by the medieval 'Weeping' Chancel of the church itself. The asymmetric design echoes the medieval stone arches and the slight tension resulting from their juxtaposition.

Standing at the back of the Nave looking eastwards in St Mary's it is difficult to find the visual centre point of the East end because of the sloping angle of the chancel. I have reflected this in the Altar design. Whilst the outer edges of the feet form a perfect rectangle they meet at different points where they reach the top - challenging the viewer to find the Altar's visual centre.

The left leg juts through the Altar top making a cross shape when viewed from the front.

A stainless steel candle holder has been set into the Altar top surrounded by the words 'I AM THE LIGHT'.

I see it as a sculpture that serves as a table and as a table that has been transfigured into a piece of sculpture; an echo of the change of wine into the Blood of Christ.

I wanted it to be a celebration of the material from which it is constructed; English Oak and through its simplicity serve to Glorify God.

As a baby I was baptised in the Norman Tub font - half a century on it is with a sense of great privilege that I can give something back to this church.