Annual Woodcarving Exhibition Saturday 12th August ~ Waterside Woodcarvers

Published: 07 August 2023

Proof that Woodcarving skills are still alive on the Waterside 

Waterside Woodcarvers are holding their annual exhibition on Sat 12 August at St Andrews Church hall, Beaulieu Rd, Dibden Purlieu, SO45 4PT, 11am -3pm. Entry is free and there is plenty of free parking in front of St Andrews church and at the rear in Oak Road car park.

At the exhibition you will be able to see a wide range of carvings produced by local club members and demonstrations of some carving techniques. In addition there will be a sales table of carvings including walking sticks and jewellery. And following the success of 2022 there will again be a prize draw for a beautiful bird carving. Draw tickets (£2) will only be available to purchase on the day.

Woodcarving today is a blend of both traditional and modern techniques. Some like to use a mallet and chisel or gouge; some prefer to use a knife. Power tools are popular with some, often used to create texture, and pyrography adds yet another effect. Then there are the rasps, files, rifflers, micro-chisels and even scalpels! There are as many ways to carve wood as there are carvers: everyone finds their preferred style and tools as they gain experience.

Choice of wood can be just as important: many carvings in old churches are in oak but the preferred wood these days is lime. However, you will see items carved in other hardwoods such as mahogany, oak, ash, cherry and maple. Special effects can result from using other woods such as zebrano, laburnum and spalted beech. The list is endless – and so, it seems, is the imagination of the members. You can expect to see a huge range of topics from abstract and utilitarian to wildlife and religious icons.

In past years visitors have been invited to vote for their favourite piece as ‘Best in Show’, but with over 150 to choose from it has proved to be quite a daunting task. So this year the club are making it easier for you – there will be lots of carvings on display but only 30 or so on one table to choose from when voting. They hope that means even more visitors will feel able to vote this time. There is no prize for the carver as such – just the warm feeling that other people like what they have spent very many hours creating.

Everyone wants to handle wood carvings. They are very tactile objects. But some carvings can be rather fragile, so the club will also provide a ‘Touch Table’. There, instead of “Please do not touch”, you will see “Please handle with care”.
This friendly club currently has about 40 members and meets regularly at Noadwood School, using their woodwork room. It also holds social events throughout the year, usually at St Andrews. New members, min age 16yrs, are always welcome and provided with tuition and support.

For more information, see their website or phone the chairman Di Smith on 02380 845787.