The Lark over the Sussex Weald at Devils Dyke or ‘A Hike on the Downs’
Print size 124 x 30.5 cm
Devils Dyke was formed during the Ice age; it is England’s deepest and widest dry valley nearly a mile long. Described by Constable as ‘the grandest view of the World. The view I portray looks down onto the Sussex Weald confined by the South and in the distance the North Downs.
Painters and poets have historically celebrated this view, it comes to my mind the poem ‘A Hike on the Downs’ by John Betjeman from the book printed in 1937 ‘ Continual Dew’ that goes like this:
“Yes, rub some soap upon your feet!
We’ll hike round Winchester for weeks—
Like ancient Britons—just we two—
Or more perhaps like ancient Greeks.
“You take your pipe—that will impress
Your strength on anyone who passes;
I’ll take my Plautus (non purgatus)
And both my pairs of horn-rimmed glasses.
The joy of companionship and invitation to roam these country paths in your own eccentric fashion, be who you are among the greens.
Can you spot the two larks in this print? As it happens in nature you will have to put some effort to find them. Larks in Mythology and literature have several meanings, they stand for daybreak as in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 29 “Like to the lark at break of day arising / From sullen earth sings hymns at heaven’s gate; ..”
About Alejandro Martinez:
He was born in Granada, Spain, in 1973. He studied architecture at the Universidad de Sevilla and graduated in 1998. He has always had a passion for drawing and in parallel with his architectural training he nurtured his particular interest in pen and ink drawings with graphic design.
From 2000 he worked as an architect in the UK. In 2006, longing for the proximity of the sea, he moved to Brighton. This change of scenery provided him with a rich gallery of experiences from which to draw inspiration. The subjects for his work varies with influences drawn from architectural detail, city views, landscapes, motion and still life.