A collection of newly painted artworks, named ‘The Watkins Collection’ was launched at Amport House in Andover on 21st October. The paintings represent each of the Army’s Core Values and are designed to aid the teaching and understanding of values and standards, encourage conversation and draw on soldiers’ experiences.
The six pieces of artwork were endorsed by the Chaplain General and Archdeacon to Her Majesty’s Land Forces, The Venerable Clinton Langston QHC, CF and in partnership with The Methodist Church who commissioned the project.
The artist, Reverend Ric Stott, an accomplished artist and pioneer Minister was commissioned to produce the paintings. In order to better understand the Army ethos and discover how the Core Values are lived in soldiers’ work, he met with individuals to hear their stories. Inspired by what they had to say Ric began piecing the parts together.
The Chaplain General said, “On behalf of the Royal Army Chaplaincy department I’d like to thank Ric for his outstanding artwork and creativity and also The Methodist Church for all their support, in leaning into the Armed Forces and in bringing this initiative together and giving our Chaplains something so wonderful to work with and spark discussions. It’s important to acknowledge that we all learn in different ways, one of those ways is through art and this is a fantastic way to offer that invitation and ignite conversation. I look forward to seeing how these pieces of work aid or teaching, understanding and development.”
The Core Values illustrated by the art are: Courage, Discipline, Respect for Others, Integrity, Loyalty, and Selfless Commitment. Utilising the artwork, Army chaplains will be encouraged to reflect with soldiers on the meaning of these values and how each one applies to them. Questions that might be prompted from the artwork include ‘what helps you to find the courage to overcome fear?’ and ‘hat inspires you to put the needs of others above your own?’
The Reverend Chrissie Howe, Secretary of the Methodist Forces Board said; “It might surprise a few people to learn that the Methodist Church has commissioned artwork on the British Army’s Core Values. Yet it makes perfect sense as our Army Chaplains regularly teach ‘Values and Standards’ to soldiers. We are delighted with Ric’s work as the images are perfect discussion starters, both poignant and dynamic.
The collection has been named ‘The Watkins Collection’ after the Revered Owen Spencer Watkins, the first Methodist Army Chaplain to serve in the field between 1897 and 1928 and who was instrumental in the formation of the Royal Army Chaplains’ Department.