The word ‘landscape’ derives from a Germanic term meaning ‘a clearing in the forest’ usually made by humans. Landscape is therefore constructed – just like the act of building a home. This quilt depicts Castle Drogo surrounded by volunteer and staff homes – deliberately contrasting Drogo’s austere and monumental form with an illustration that is squishy and cosy – which is, after all, what many people want when making a home.
The geometry of the quilt derives from the Rose Garden, where volunteers’ residences occupy the positions of the oblong beds of roses. The quilt is subdivided – recalling the cloister garden – but also positioning a new path leading up to Drogo. This recalls a trope found in countless fairytales – the castle at the end of a long journey.
Our quilt is a commemorative record of people who have worked and volunteered at Drogo, creating an intriguing document for visitors to inspect and decode. The building they choose to live in tells many things about a person. This artwork reminds us of what architecture means on a local, personal level – that architecture does not have to be grand houses and castles but can be the buildings we use and are attached to everyday. Similarly, it describes Julius Drewe’s ambition for Castle Drogo as a home – not a military fortification as historic castles might once have been.