Pentridge from The Bokerly Dyke

By Clare Shepherd

A limited edition print of 350 copies signed and numbered by the artist, finished size 19 x 7ins from an original oil painting of 48 x 18ins and printed to Fine Art Trade Guild standard.

Clare Shepherd is an artist who lives and works in the Cranborne Chase area of Dorset. Pentridge (‘Trantridge’ in Hardy’s Tess of the D’Ubervilles) is a little hamlet on the Cranborne Chase first recorded as ‘Pentric’ 80 years before the birth of Alfred the Great. The name comes from the Celtic: ‘pen’-hill, ‘twrch’-boar, and was obviously the roaming place of wild boar.

Clare painted Pentridge from The Bokerly Dyke at Martin Down, a national nature reserve through which runs the Bokerly Dyke, a ditch and bank built for defence by the Romano-Britons against the encroaching Saxons. The Bokerly Dyke is still the county boundary between Dorset and Hampshire and lies in the shadow of Pentridge Hill, with Penbury Knoll, the highest point of Pentridge Hill being evident in the far right hand side of the painting with its thicket of pines.

Clare is interested in combining in her images both the past and the present. She loves roads, tracks, and paths, particularly tracks that help to describe the lie of the land such as plough-lines on fields. For Clare the idea that the landscape has been ‘living’ continuously for so long with human occupation is fascinating and she feels very firmly rooted to this area. She likes to create her paintings in layers so that the first layers to go down onto the canvas are not the layers you see on the final surface; however, evidence of the previous layers exist to a greater or lesser degree.

Oil on Canvas

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