Boston Pilgrim Woman

Pilgrim Woman is the creation of a new sculpture using the story of families arrested and held in Boston jail in the early 17th century. 

The project seeks to engage women living in Lincolnshire from both immigrant and non immigrant backgrounds. Working with an ancient method of weaving on a Lucet in a series of workshops both physical and virtual to engage women in semi rural areas. 

The sculpture, co-created with the community, takes hand weaving and stitching combined with the latest technology to scan the artist in Tudor clothing using photogrammetry creating a digital version. A 3D print will be cast in bronze using the traditional lost wax technique. 

Reflecting on the family groups held in BostonJail, the artist will be experimenting with cords made on a Lucet. 

Once Rachel is happy once happy with the flow and movement of the community made woven cords, two female figures will be bound together, they will be impregnated with wax to stiffen and hold them. The cords will also be cast in bronze using the traditional lost wax technique, and repositioned on the sculpture. 

The completed bronze sculpture will be exhibited in a new exhibition at The Collection to shine a light on the historical bondage of women to a male counterpart and open a dialogue for the role of women today. 

The finished bronze artwork will be installed in spring 2022 and will provide a thought provoking new sculpture inspired by the past but prompting reflection on contemporary Boston.

There are three ways to get involved:

  • Weaving kits
  • Listen to the podcast
  • A 45-minute talk from the artist

Weaving Kits:
Over a hundred weaving kits have been created and distributed to get the local community involved with the project and unfortunately we have no more available.

Listen to the podcast:
The podcast series charts Rachel’s journey to create a series of Pilgrim Woman Sculptures for the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower sailing and looks at the history, inspiration and the cultures of four nations.

You can find all the episodes here, and have listen to episode 4 below.

In this episode, special guest Carrie Reichardt, an artist on our Boston Buoys project, joins Rachel to discuss how they began their life as artists, therapeutic methods of making and their art commissions for the town of Boston, Lincolnshire. Creative break provided by poet Sarah Wimbush, produced by Poesy In Motion.

Artist Talk:
Join Rachel in this 45 minute talk where she shares with you this four year long project to create sculptures for the Pilgrim Roots District including her latest project Pilgrim Woman Boston.
Following in the footsteps of the Pilgrims aboard the Mayflower, sculptor Rachel Carter undertook a journey of a life time crossing the Atlantic by freight ship to gain firsthand experience of the tumultuous journey the Pilgrims faced 400 years ago aboard the Mayflower.
On landing in America Rachel headed to Harvard University to view hand woven items made by First Nations using weaving, knotting and bead work called Wampum before crossing the Cape Cod Bay to Provincetown for an artist residency at the Pilgrim Monument. Upon arriving back in England Rachel has created a series of sculptures called Pilgrim Woman where she her self became the model for the statue dressed in authentic Tudor clothing that was hand stitched.

If you are interested in this talk for yourself or perhaps a community group you represent, please email