John Muir Open TIDE | Jenny Pope

John Muir Open TIDE | Jenny Pope


Reflections on process of making work for exhibition.

Earlier this year Greta Thunberg was almost unknown and when I explained to people what was inspiring my work they looked blank when I said her name. How things have changed. She is speaking a truth that is resonating amongst many. I am now more comfortable saying climate crisis, climate emergency. I am also aware of the need to be kind to ourselves and each other as we attempt to make sense of our personal and collective responsibilities. I am aware of the need to connect to nature, what we feel is precious we are more likely to value. The wild open spaces as well as the weedy corners.

I have managed, with the help of Hannah Cameron, from Eagle Lab to hack some solar powered lights to make my ‘Hope Energisers’ move. It is the start of an experiment to have sculptures that move, that people can interact with and I am keen to develop more climate related work.

I have also really enjoyed crocheting the nets for the ‘Sunrise gatherers’, it has been very theraputic and absorbing and I am reminded of the joy in making using a repetitive process. It is important to me to enjoy the making of my art as much as the end result.





I am delighted to be part of this year’s John Muir Open and to have been awarded the bursary too.

I have been busy in my studio creating new work in response to the brief of ‘Dialogues of Change’.

My work recently has been about psychological issues and ways that change can be made and I have created a series of objects, “Tools to Evoke Change”.

The new work looks at the positive aspects of being in nature, as well as on the mix of emotions around climate change.



I have started to create a series of tools called “Sunrise Gatherers” and these are specific to particular beaches along the East Lothian Coast. The inspiration came from my early morning walks along Portobello Beach, and the idea of trying to capture a moment at a particular time and place, and I like the idea that each place would need a slightly different tool. I also want to make some of my tools move and have arranged to work with Eagle Lab, based at Codebase, in Edinburgh, to help me with kinetic sculptures, possibly solar powered.