Renowned Lost Words artist Jackie Morris visits Nymans for new painting

Nymans visitors have the chance to meet a top illustrator in the gallery this weekend.

Artwork by Jackie Morris
Artwork by Jackie Morris

Jackie Morris, who worked on the acclaimed picture book The Lost Words with author Robert Macfarlane, will be at the National Trust property on Saturday and Sunday, January 19-20.

Jackie plans to paint a heron and osprey for a new work in gold leaf. She will also be sharing some of her stories from the creation of the popular book.

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The gallery at Nymans will feature more of her paintings along with some of the ‘poem-spells’ by Robert.

Artwork by Jackie Morris

The Lost Words, which was released in 2017, was a unique project aimed at both young and old readers – a collection of ‘illustrated spells’ that celebrated the relationship between language and the natural world.

A Nymans spokesperson said: “The Lost Words is also a response to Macfarlane and Morris’s belief that nature is in retreat from our children’s stories and imaginations. A survey of British primary school children found 8-11 year-olds were ‘substantially better’ able to identify types of Pokémon character than species of common UK wildlife.”

Robert wrote 20 spell-poems – one for each ‘lost word’ – and Jackie painted more than 50 watercolours with gold leaf.

Robert said: “The Lost Words exhibition could hardly have a more natural or perfect habitat than Nymans. The beautiful gardens and landscape there hold many of the plants and creatures named in the book. Jackie Morris and I could not be happier that her paintings – darting kingfishers, and my poem-spells will find their home in West Sussex for half a year, from midwinter through spring to early summer.

“We hope many people, especially children, will find The Lost Words at Nymans.”

There are plenty of other events planned at Nymans from January until June that aim to encourage a love of nature in both children and adults.

The Lost Words touring exhibition is organised by Compton Verney, with Hamish Hamilton and Penguin Books.

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