AS VISITORS and worshippers returned to Winchester Cathedral at the weekend, they were met with the sight of a new colourful installation.

Revd Gill Sakakini has created the installation ‘Held in a Burst of Colour’ as part of her role as Artist-Priest.

Speaking about the display, she said: “It seemed fitting to mark the return to public worship after lockdown in a significant visual way and to draw our gaze to a hopeful future, through the image of the rainbow which has been so familiar and sustaining during the past months.”

The rainbow colours, familiar in the long lockdown, form a reverse arc in this installation, with fabrics flowing out from a central point in the cathedral nave. After days of hard work, the 150 metres of muslin fabric, each dyed especially for the project, were hoisted up into the nave as everyone nervously watched it raise up from the floor.

Revd Sakakini added: “We planned for everything to be attached before raising and had calculated the angle of the curves, but only during the hoisting was it really possible to see the overall aesthetic effect and I was relieved and excited to see it come together. This moment coincided with cathedral prayers being read and those of us on the ground were held in communal stillness and a sense of awe, our heads lifted in expectancy.”

Admiring the installation, the Very Revd Catherine Ogle, Dean of Winchester said “It’s exciting to see a gifted artist responding to our contemporary world in the context of the magnificent space of the cathedral. This gentle and joyful installation lifts the spirits.”

The installation can be seen at the cathedral throughout the summer.