Saturday, November 25, 2006

Aesthetes 0 Philistines 3

I took the dog for a walk by the Great Broad at Whitlingham Country Park, Norwich, Norfolk and saw this sculpture which is always a source of amusement for me.

At the very same moment the sculptor was determining the exact spot that his (or her) work had to be sited to show it off to best advantage, an unknown official was signing a decree that lifebuoys had to be planted at predetermined distances -without variance- along the bank.

I find joy in the fact that no compromise could be found in this clash of titanic egos - one artistic, the other faceless and bureaucratic - with the result that the lifebuoy is partially hidden and thus made useless while the sculpture loses all the effect that should be given by it's solitary position on the waterside.

Further along the waters edge one comes to the Millennium Marker (Illustrated below) which is inscribed with the most awful tosh imaginable. When someone had the idea to put these up did they read what they said? Had they no pride?

Funded by the Royal Bank of Scotland (presumably in revenge for the Highland Clearances, Culloden and the failure of the Jacobite cause) it reads.

We have endured all of time to be here together today,
We are all children of the stars
We have navigated the heavens
We have travelled the earth


Oh please stop. It hurts. Mummy make the cruel man go away.
Whitlingham New Age Tosh

Envoi . A further explanation for the presence of the Life buoy has occurred to me; What happened was the sculpture was so outstanding that it would draw crowds from miles around. People would naturally stand back to admire it and then....................... splash!
The life buoy was installed, as an emergency measure, after a whole minibus worth of the New Catton branch of the Townswomen Guild stepped backwards into a watery grave.

1 comment:

Trucie Henderson said...

Oh dear god, where does one start?

Perhaps with a sledgehammer and a blowtorch...

*rants off into the distance*