‘Shelter’, a new piece in the Motherhood collection

Shelter 7
‘Shelter’ by Sam Shendi

This is simply one of the most stunning pieces my husband has made, though I think that every time he finishes one.

In Maslow’s paper , ‘The Theory of Human Motivation” he proposed that healthy human beings have needs which he arranged in a hierarchy. Physiological and safety needs being at the bottom of the pyramid indicating more primitive or basic than others (such as social and ego needs). If we think of those physiological and safety needs for a child as  breathing,  food and water, place to sleep, security of the family, health and place to live we might group that under a heading ‘Shelter’.

Shelter 1

A mother’s first instinct is to bring her child to her chest, cover them and protect them from the world around. A shelter is a building that provides cover. Some mothers in the world are looking after children with no building or structure to protect their offspring. Mothers are the only shelter. The curvature of this piece is as though the mother is moving her body to be a physical shelter.

Shelter 3

Shelter 8

The way the lights and the shadows fall enhance the beauty of this piece but the almost crumpled position of the woman’s body displays her potential discomfort, the sacrifice and the perseverance to keep the babe protected.

Where we are more fortunate to have those essentials of a roof over our heads with warmth and food, we start to shelter our children from the reality of the world around us. How much should we do that? Can children become over protected so much so that they can’t function in society because it is too harsh a reality. These questions are starting to whirl round my mind as my eldest, I am observing, is starting to leave those years of innocent childhood behind him. How do we persevere the innocence and wonder of those formative years without restricting all that the world offers. Should we shelter our children from the inevitability of the environment we live in today?

Shelter 9

Shelter 10

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8 thoughts on “‘Shelter’, a new piece in the Motherhood collection

  1. This is a terrific post and a wonderful piece of work. The position of the mother is very moving on so many levels, given today’s world: she could also have been wounded but is trying to protect her child to the very end, for example. Superb.

    1. Yes there is a story behind the colours, in the whole collection which is 10 pieces of Mother and child there is an element of blue in each piece to symbolise the ‘blues’ in motherhood. In this piece it’s a soft blue as the protection may be painful but has a greater purpose. There is a meaning to the orange also but I forgotten what it was. I will ask the sculptor and get back to you…in each piece the colours are always chosen with meaning they are not only decorative, there is a philosophy behind it all 🙂

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