“A Woman in Motion” is a sculpture depicting Margery Kempe, created by artist Rosemary Goodenough. The sculpture was unveiled on 4th February 2023 by General The Lord Dannatt. The sculpture provides a focal point for Margery Kempe in her home town of King’s Lynn and her parish church of St Margaret’s, now King’s Lynn Minster.
The sculpture provides a focal point for Margery Kempe in her home town of King’s Lynn and her parish church of St Margaret’s, now King’s Lynn Minster.
Below are excerpts from the artist’s statement highlighting some of the features of the sculpture. (©copyright Rosemary Goodenough 2023)
Elements of the sculpture represent different aspects of Margery Kempe’s life and experiences. Explanations below were taken from an Artist Statement provided by Rosemary Goodenough.
The sculpture is made from aluminium, as it is “the most abundant element on earth” and “Margery Kempe, as the mother of 14 children, was most certainly herself ‘abundant”.
Margery was an avid pilgrim, journeying to holy shrines across England, in Europe and all the way to Jerusalem. She is depicted as wearing a wide-brimmed hat typical of medieval pilgrims. Reflecting her arduous journeys and selfless giving of alms, Margery’s clothes are “although plentiful, very clearly torn and patched but still with an element of grace and elegance”.
Although a wife and mother, Margery was determined to wear white as a sign of her chastity and devotion to Christ. This was reflected by the artist as “given her determination to wear white, for which she was persecuted and prosecuted, I have made her robes white but her dress is silvery aluminium as I wanted to give a nod to her love of finery”.
Regarding Margery’s posture, the artist states that “Margery’s head is bent in prayer and her ‘top-knot’ is my way of denoting indomitable spirit, both secular and religious”.