Morvargh (Cornish name for Seahorse)
At the start of 2017 I considered acquiring an ‘Obby ‘Oss of my own. A smaller ‘Oss skull would be ideal so that I could also be the rider. I originally searched for the skull of a small horse asking the advice of David Pitt who owns and rides Coppertown Mari. I then discovered the skull of an Icelandic foal with Viking heritage which connected us as I was also born on an ancient Viking settlement.
I had to ensure the foal was in good condition and was aware David Pitt had brought a number of ‘Obby ‘Osses into the world. On purchasing the foal it was sent immediately to him. David kept me updated with video footage explaining the work required to make the skull robust for riding. He showed me via video footage the skull’s condition and the adult teeth embedded deep within the skull that had not fully emerged. (Icelandic foals do not always survive the severe weather in their country and also correct nourishment is extremely important for them to do so. )
David worked on the foal in his free time over a period of 3 months and when the skull was ready he constructed the silver ears and a tongue. I sent him shiny teal coloured baubles for the eyes which he attached inside the sockets. David also constructed a pole along with other fixtures and fittings so that the jaw had a beautiful ‘snap’.
The foal’s personality was already emerging and I asked our good friend Craig Weatherill the Cornish word for seahorse and discovered it was Morvargh. I had given the image a lot of thought and with my connection to the sea, the ‘Oss would naturally become a part of this.
The three months that passed without seeing or holding Morvargh was a little frustrating, but I knew my ‘Oss was in expert hands! David Pitt travelled all the way from Wales to deliver her in person on Beltane 2017.
He was accompanied by his beautiful Coppertown Mari. We bought him dinner at our local pub the St Buryan Inn and visited Boscawen-un stone circle together. Cassandra had the wonderful experience of riding Coppertown while David took video footage of them.
When David left, it was time for me to begin work on Morvargh. I had already given Penkevyll a new dress, mane and tatters as well as creating two new hearth dolls, so my creative energy was flowing.
I began with the mane, fitting hessian material to the skull. I then braided strands of wool together until I had constructed 40 braids from two large balls of wool. The braids were then sewn to the hessian.
When the mane was complete, I attached 120 pearls to it and large mother of pearl shells along the centre parting.
I added a starfish and shells to the skull using a glue recommended by John Exton, ribbons were tied at the sides of the skull along with cockleshells that make a wonderful sound. There are Pirate rings in the ears and the teal dress is made from a sheet and netted material.
Morvargh’s first outing was at Penberth Cove on a beautiful warm sunny day. I carried my ‘Oss from the car to the cove.
It was a wonderful to be by the sea. My close bond with Morvargh had strengthened as I worked on the image and we naturally merged as one.
The ground ahead of me was visible when walking on the stones as the ‘Oss dress has a netted panel at the front. Even though the dress material is made of cotton, the temperature quickly rose within it.
Morvargh will attend charity events such as the R.N.L.I and other sea-related charities throughout Cornwall.
Morvargh will also visit festivals and events with us when Penkevyll is not available. I will keep you updated on our adventures. There is also a Facebook page
An extra special thank you to the wonderful David Pitt for all his hard work and preparation, also to the lovely Craig Weatherill who helped name her and the fabulous John Exton for helpful hints in decoration of ‘Osses. Thank you also to Cassandra Latham Jones for her support.
Morvargh appeared for the first time this year at the All Hallows Dark Gathering 2017 in Boscastle.
We will be seeing you soon…….