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In making sculpture I am not trying to bring about an exact representation of a person, creature or other living thing but to find a more universal quality within the forms, perhaps best approached through some deeper level of recognition.

The inspiration for the doves has come from both the rituals and artefacts of ancient history and our current understanding of the natural world.

Birds, and in particular doves have played a part in European rituals and myths for hundreds of years. The dove - an ancient sign of fertility for the Sumerians and Hebrews - is often associated with the goddess Astarte, dating back to 5000 BC.

It is believed that doves were recognised as an embodiment of divinity, a representation of an aspect of the goddess in bird form in Minoan culture. They are also associated with Aphrodite, Goddess of love and desire, physical beauty, pleasure and happiness. In the Christian Church the dove is the symbol for spiritual love, and more recently adopted by all humankind as a symbol for peace on earth.

As part of the great trinity of bird symbols for western civilisation the dove, along with the eagle and the raven, ranks high in our collective images.

Inspired by this historical backdrop I watch the doves and pigeons in the disused factory windows, their unconscious affections reflected in the black-country canals. Messengers of our collective past.

                                                                              Jo Naden