Day 018…

While visiting Portishead near Bristol, for our family dentist appointment (deep joy), I took a few quick shots of one of the impressive public artworks just by the docks, titled ‘Flying’, by Lucy Glendinning.

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Check the website: http://www.publicartportishead.co.uk/simple.cfm?y=y&page_id=113

“I wanted this sculpture to reflect the feel of the site, to give the sense of scale that being by the sea gives us, the feel of the wind and its effect.  The impression of freedom and power the sea lends through its elemental force, as well as being a point of travel and adventure.

The flying figure gives the sculpture a gravity-defying energy, an uplifting and celebratory sense which communicates a conscious or subconscious confirmation of human achievement.” (Lucy Glendinning)

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Halo light sculpture…

An awesome light sculpture by Valerie Boy, on the Apartment Therapy website.

Photo courtesy of http://www.apartmenttherapy.com

This uses powder-coated metal which is cut out around the edges of the pattern to produce a halo effect – very detailed work and a great idea!

An easy way to achieve a similar effect would be to cut out multiple stencil patterns which are then stuck on a canvas, with a darker (or non-transparent) paint layer sprayed over. Once the stencils are removed the spaces would let the light through – slightly more rough than this but probably quicker : )

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National Grid ‘Pylon for the Future’ competition shortlist…

What might seem like one of the most boring and insignificant architectural and engineering design competitions, could actually be affecting people’s lives for the next 100 years.

There has been huge debate about the impact of wind farms on the landscape but rarely do you hear the uproar over what is terrible and permanent blight to our landscape – the National Grid electricity pylons.

So, a competition was launched and 250 entries were received, resulting is 6 shortlisted designs, 3 of which are shown below.

Ian Ritchie Architects: Producing a dynamic silhouette, the pylon exaggerates its reach to the sky, sometimes appearing as a full black lance and other times as a thin sliver, like a single brushstroke on a canvas. The pylon becomes an animated character in the landscape… part of a series or pattern… while the convex exterior skin reflects its surroundings. The landscape exists within the pylon as the pylon exists within the landscape.

Gustafson Porter: Flower Tower expresses the transmission of energy through forms associated with nature. In elevation, the Flower Tower reads like a bouquet of flowers or leaves. The bunching together of several ‘stems’ creates structural stiffness at the base. These stems are tied together by connecting plates and horizontal bridges which allow access to maintain the cables. Arcs defined by the cable clearance swings generate curving ‘leaves’, which splay out from the stem. The earth wire is held by a spike or ‘flower’ at the top of the tower.

AL_A Arup: Plexus creates a poetic dialogue between structure and landscape. Its shape responds to changes in topography, striding across the horizon in sequence with a lightness and grace. Although seemingly filigree in nature, these pylons have been designed for resilience, adapting to different site conditions by expansion and contraction of the arced form. The pylons fluctuate in size and profile, visibly mapping the terrain.

I would certainly not be disappointed with either Arup’s or Ian Ritchie’s offering repeated thousands of times across our countryside. The ‘burying cables’ option will almost certainly be too expensive and also actually damaging to green structures. The disruption and damage caused to the landscape would be huge.

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‘Crucible’ exhibition @ Gloucester Cathedral…

I’ve just got back from another lunchtime trip to the Crucible exhibtion at the cathedral. Still very good impression and this time it’s officially open, so there were a few more sculptures than last time and some of the positions have moved slightly + some added lighting has been introduced to certain areas.

Check out the exhibition leaflet: Crucible leaflet both sides

There was a really nice installation piece (number 59 on the leaflet by David Behar-Perahia – ‘Dripping’) which had been added since I last went. The pics don’t really do it justice, as it’s a mving or fluid light show, with added subtle sound effects. The floor shimmers with multi-coloured light and there might be some kind of link between the movement of the people and the sound.

I also hadn’t appreciated fully the work by Lynn Chadwick, and there is a brief explanation of the process of sand-casting which is used to make the bronze sculptures. Damien Hirst’s ‘St. Bartholomew, Exquisite Pain’ is also more impressive the second time and was drawing a lot of people around it.

The exhibition is on till 30th October.

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‘Crucible’ – sculpture exhibition…

What an impressive collection of artworks!

I’d heard some mixed reviews and the BBC Local website was less than inspiring, but the real thing is very strong. Check the following links for further info.

http://www.gloucestercathedral.org.uk/index.php?page=crucible

http://www.crucible2010.co.uk/index.php?page=home

The range of styles and materials is amazing and i’ve never seen a collection like this before, certainly not on this scale, with over 75 artworks by 45 artists, spread over the whole cathedral and grounds.

The atmosphere inside the cathedral makes for an amazing background for the artworks. There’s even a slowly spinning piece hung above the main hall and a startling Jesus figure which looks like something out of Hell Raiser (the film).

I loved the little figures set in many of the stone alcoves and plinths scattered around the cathedral. Well worth a look.

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