Sunday, 4 December 2011
Tonight we were treated to the beauty of starlight both real in the sky and imagined by artist Nick Sayers in hut 79a. Nick makes everyday objects such as cable ties, coathangers, plastic bottles and bicycle reflectors, beautiful by turning them into spherical sculptures which glow with internal light.
The simplicity of these objects spoke powerfully of the simple trust shown by those who followed the star at that first Christmas and the way God can transform the ordinary into the extraordinary.
The interplay of light and shadow in and around the hut created a wonderful atmosphere as the children ran around, carols played and the crowd gathered to wonder at the star and the miracle of light shining through the darkness.
There was a calmness and serenity about the event tonight as we watched the waves roll under a glistening moon and fall onto the beach. This was emphasised by the wide promenade and the broad expanse of Hove Lawns behind Fiona MacFarlane's hut which was the perfect setting for these sculptures which seemed very at home.
Our next hut is back towards the lagoon and is number 332.
The third hut in this year's calendar took Mary's preparation as the theme and particularly focussed on the Annunciation. Mary sat in the hut very serene and peaceful, absorbing the knowledge that she had received from the angel and contemplating what this meant for her future. She wore a halo of stars which reminded us of the crown of thorns and underneath her blue rob was a little sash of red as a foretaste of the pain that was to come.
The walls of the hut were lined in white and some of the words of the Magnificat, Mary's song after receiving the news from the angel, were written up and people were invited to step into the hut and add their own words.
The doors were not fully open and the outside of the hut was dressed with colourful flowers and other decorations symbolising the contrast between the external understanding of Christmas with all it's fun and festivity and our own internal preparation to meet the Christ child.
Alongside this we had the second of our specially commissioned nativity characters. We will bring out one of these every night and assemble them all together for the first time on Christmas Eve to make a unique nativity scene.
Our next hut is number 79a and will be on a Star theme with light sculptures from local artist Nick Sayers.