Animal and birds inspire Harriet’s work, an interest developed from an early age due to the influence of her late father, Chris Mead, a well known author and broadcaster. His passion for birds gave Harriet a deep appreciation of the natural world.
Harriet is fascinated by all kinds of creatures and is often inspired by animals that are sometimes overlooked. She seeks to celebrate the animal in her work without sentimentality so that her sculptures have a quiet presence to them and capture something of the essence of the subject.
The sculptures are made of welded steel, a material of versatile strength that enables her to capture movement in the subject, and balance pieces in a way nearly impossible using a more traditional material.
The vast majority of her work is made entirely from found objects so it becomes a 3D collage of old tools and discarded junk. The contours and structure of the subject are portrayed using anything that can be welded: handles from pliers, pitchforks, rusty chains and old horseshoes find a new life within her work and become a quirky combination of agricultural and natural history.
Harriet first exhibited at the SWLA at 18. She was elected a full member in 2001 and is current President of the Society.