Sunday, August 10, 2008


Public art irritates & fascinates me in equal quantities. On the one hand it is uplifting to fill our public spaces with pieces of art, it shows how far we have come since we first ventured out of the caves in to the wide open spaces. On the other hand because of its limitations with its desire to please everyone it can often seem to be a waste of public money.

The above photograph is of a grey metal structure that adorns a public space in New Lynn, Auckland. It is a representation of a Waka, apparently. Showing its movement through the Waitakere ranges & representing the once abundant forests of Kauri that grew there. Well sorry but how a dull grey metal boat hull says all that truly defeats me. The artist will tell you that if you have had ANY reaction provoked by his piece then he has done his job. I hate that argument as it is in my mind the excuse used for poor attempts at public art, ill conceived ideas & slip shod execution of the concept.

This piece believe or not is not the worst offender in the area I inhabit, I will be posting more as I come across them. Peraphs you might like to nominate your own candidate for worst piece of public art. I will also be on the look out for pieces that to me seem to work as well, just to keep things balanced.

Listening to:

Kaiser chiefs
Bill Nelson
Teardrop Explodes

1 comment:

Yorkshire Pudding said...

I know what you mean about irritating or plainly self-indulgent public "art" that quickly dates. On the other hand, i am pleased to say that England has spawned the brilliant Anthony Gormley... creator amongst other things of the iconic "The Angel of The North" in Gateshead.