A few years ago I found myself wandering down a leafy urban back lane on a regular basis to get home. I found an old key on the ground which I placed in the gaps between the bricks of an old wall nearby. As the season progressed this key was joined by found pennies, lolly sticks, twigs, and magpie feathers. I always wondered how long these items would stay in their new homes. I wouldn’t have to wait too long to find out. Just over a year later the wall was demolished and replaced with something new. My found trinkets were lost forever.
Back to the here and now and I’ve finally got to the stage with my Good Pennies that I feel I can release them into the wild. They are now very much at large in the local forest. Nestled among stumps and mosses my ten Good Pennies have become tree sprites; entities with energies unknown, guiding and beguiling, tempting and reassuring. I will be revisiting the locations in a week’s time to see if anything has changed. They are to be found, or they are to remain lost – destined to return their clay to the earth. I’m interested to see what state of decay they will be in as time progresses.
The two ‘placing’ experiments are very different in nature. I’m not sure my Good Pennies will stay around as long as the keys in the wall. As the surface of the white clay decomposes they will become more visible in their leafy locations and I think they’ll be picked at by curious creatures. I want to visit once a week and photograph what I find and consider what has been lost.