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Sleeping Soldier


On the eve of the centenary of the First World War Armistice, the image of a Sleeping Soldier will appear on the side of the Abbey Gatehouse, facing east waiting for the rising sun. Projected through the night, he will disappear as the sun rises on the dawn of Remembrance Day. His watch is over and he passes once more into eternal sleep to join his fallen comrades.

The Sleeping Soldier is a piece of public visual art animated by the artist Leo Jamelli and funded by the Arts Council, to create awareness of the sacrifices made by servicemen and women during WW1. The Sleeping Soldier installation will involve the projection of hand drawn animations of 3 World War 1 servicemen and one of a waiting widow, sacrificing their sleep to keep watch over 4 sleeping historical sites across the South West, commemorating the centenary of Armistice. The installations simply show the movement of these figures breathing. This limited movement gives the observer the question: are they sleeping just about to wake, or struggling to stay awake and about to slip into slumber. The audience watches waiting with anticipation, almost reflecting the figures themselves, watching, waiting for the unexpected.

The hand drawn animations with pencil-sketched imagery give an ethereal feel: The way in which each frame is drawn and shaded makes the final animation flicker and jump, reinforcing the idea that these figures are in transition between two worlds and have only awoken for one night to find those they have lost. The imagery suggests the sacrifice of the common soldier, women and families. It uses the sacrifice of sleep and the struggle to stay awake as a metaphor for the sacrifices all servicemen and women make during war. I am very excited about the idea of having these large installations being projected at 3 cities across the Southwest, and especially honoured to be part of Bristol Cathedral's Centenary commenorations. I hope the sleeping soldier encourage some moments of thought and reflection." Leo Jamelli, Artist of The Sleeping Solider


Next Sleeping Soldier Dates

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