Wexford Council wants "something more traditional"

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This topic contains 47 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by  Anonymous 11 years, 9 months ago.

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  • #709093

    janda
    Participant

    http://www.unison.ie/wexford_people/stories.php3?ca=38&si=1737983&issue_id=14978

    Council rejects e125,000 sculpture picked for Quays

    Wexford Borough Council has rejected a e125,000 public art project for Wexford quayfront designed by an internationally-renowned sculptor.
    Marco Dessardo, who produced a sculpture at Farmleigh last year for the Office of Public Works, presented his proposal to the Council this week.
    …councillors unanimously agreed …..they would prefer something more traditional.
    ….
    A number of recognised artists from Ireland and abroad, including Mr. Dessardo were then invited to submit sculpture designs.


    One of the aims of the Government-funded Per Cent for Art Scheme is to promote contemporary art.
    Mr. Dessardo produced an outdoor sculpture called ‘The Line’ at Farmleigh for an international symposium organised by the Office of Public Works in July 2005

    I wonder what exactly they would like. If it was apainting, I suspect the back of a chocolate box.

    jd

  • #786583

    Anonymous

    Wexford County Council / Wexford Borough Council has a history of the Councillors and Arts Officers rejecting contemporary work in favour of safe work.
    Phil Napier’s Shirts were rejected from New Ross by the Chamber of Commerce, Rory Breslin’s JFK was another mystery.

    It’s amazing that they allow White’s Hotel to ruin the skyline of Wexford and Tesco to erect another Engine Shed of a store.

    Maybe if Marco Dessardo was from Wexford it would have been accepted, it seems to me that only ‘native’ artists are allowed to produce ‘contemporary art’ over and over agin

  • #786584

    Anonymous

    Wexford is probably too stuck in the midsts of time gone by, pikemen, rebellions etc to understand what Marco Dessardo had to offer http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/wexford_drainage_mov01.html such a shame

    who knows when this country will ever really find it’s way into the twentieth century and put all that dubious parochial historical nonsense to bed once and for all and progress like the rest of Europe,

  • #786585

    Anonymous

    They pictures were released in the Wexford People today. And let me say…It is the ugliest piece of sculpture i have ever seen in my entire life. Its like…pipes and a huge red block. and the other one had a concrete boat and more pipe. Im all for modern art, but this was terrible!!!

    And to top it all off, the council will apparently have to go ahead with the design due to contracts or something.

  • #786586

    Anonymous

    @sfamato wrote:

    They pictures were released in the Wexford People today. And let me say…It is the ugliest piece of sculpture i have ever seen in my entire life. Its like…pipes and a huge red block. and the other one had a concrete boat and more pipe. Im all for modern art, but this was terrible!!!

    And to top it all off, the council will apparently have to go ahead with the design due to contracts or something.

    So, Sfamato, as a resident of Wexford what would you prefer?

    More historical pagentry? Something that will be forgotten in a few months time. Would you like something that pays homage to a single-sided inaccurate view of some skirmish that was really a good excuse for hanging protestants, that would be 1798 and all that. Would you like another Pikeman, or maybe a viking boat or something similar to the Shaw’s building, another crass Tourist Office, a whites hotel, or maybe something like the new Tesco Store.

    Or something that wiill generate interest in the town, why can so many developing countries and so called ‘deprived 3rd’ world countries accept Marco Dessardo’s work yet this country, ‘one of the best economies and most advanced etc etc, cannot.

    Sfamato have you ever seen the Lloyds Building or The Beaubourg Centre? If they can use pipes why not Wexford.

  • #786587

    Anonymous
  • #786588

    Anonymous

    no offence but that is useless ,probably the worst attempt at sculpture i’ve seen!are you sure he didnt just take a house form some columbian shanty and drop it in wexford…then again that might at least stand for something,what does this even mean?
    most importantly if wexford are paying 125grand on it tell them i can do it for free,just pop round the local dump.This is not art!

  • #786589

    Anonymous

    I’d want to see a few images of the proposal before declaiming, but it’s entirely possible that it actually isn’t good. Sometimes people have the right kneejerk reactions for the wrong reasons.

    A Richard Serra piece would be fantastic for Wexford.

  • #786590

    Anonymous

    @mansard wrote:

    have you ever seen the Lloyds Building or The Beaubourg Centre? If they can use pipes why not Wexford.

    Because they’re thirty year old “hi-tech” buildings in major capital cities?

    Talk about your historicism.

  • #786591

    Anonymous

    @mansard wrote:

    So, Sfamato, as a resident of Wexford what would you prefer?

    More historical pagentry? Something that will be forgotten in a few months time. Would you like something that pays homage to a single-sided inaccurate view of some skirmish that was really a good excuse for hanging protestants, that would be 1798 and all that. Would you like another Pikeman, or maybe a viking boat or something similar to the Shaw’s building, another crass Tourist Office, a whites hotel, or maybe something like the new Tesco Store.

    Or something that wiill generate interest in the town, why can so many developing countries and so called ‘deprived 3rd’ world countries accept Marco Dessardo’s work yet this country, ‘one of the best economies and most advanced etc etc, cannot.

    Sfamato have you ever seen the Lloyds Building or The Beaubourg Centre? If they can use pipes why not Wexford.

    I don’t think a historical sculpture or anything “rebelious” would be right for the town because as you were clearly getting at, the town is full of it. and as for your list I for one dont see anything wrong with the Shaws building, its better than what was there and has rejuvinated that part of the town, the tourist office is different, cant say im overly impressed with it, but i still dont see a problem with it. Whites is not everyones taste, I walk into town by passing it by, and i smile because it reminds me of the Enterprise. And as for the Tesco store, what exactly were you expecting? A Georgian castle?

    I dont know if the sculpture would generate interest in the town except to get people laughing at it as the drive past it on the bridge. I personally dont see what it represents, I can get what it is. If you explain to me what it is suppose to be, maybe ill look at it differently, but as it stands right now, for me, It’s weird for weirds sake.

    I personally don’t know what should go inplace on it, I honestly dont.

  • #786592

    Anonymous

    @sfamato wrote:

    I dont know if the sculpture would generate interest in the town except to get people laughing at it as the drive past it on the bridge..

    Just as an aside, what is the story with that derelict site that is in front of you as you drive over Wexford Bridge? Are there any proposals to build something worthwhile there. It has looked s**te for the last 30+ years. Who owns the site~?

  • #786593

    Anonymous

    Coming over from Ferrybank? There was a BP station there when I was living in Wexford, unless it’s a different site you’re talking about.

  • #786594

    Anonymous

    please in a good debate first take information here
    http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/wexford_drainage_text.html

  • #786595

    Anonymous

    reminds me of the situation in Dun Laoghaire, except i like that one. It has a maritime theme and the colour is nice. But theCouncillors want ot locate it s,omehwere more suitable. ie out of sight. In the wexford case, I can’t find anything of merit in either the pics or the video on the dessardo’s website. However it’s probably better than anything “more traditional” that will be proposed…

  • #786596

    Anonymous

    Reading the information on Mr Dessardo’s website, the issue here is not the one of Aesthetic.

    Again a ‘design’ has been selected / chosen by professionals only to be later rejected by politicians.

    If this prevails in Ireland what is the place going to look like soon?

  • #786597

    Anonymous

    Regardless of how you feel about the sculpture – and I happen to think it looks promising, though I’d need to see it in more detail – this story neatly sums up so much that’s wrong with the involvement of town/county councillors in the running of their local areas.

    With few exceptions, councillors have no experience of judging art. However, they have limited knowledge of architecture, traffic, drainage etc. but it hasn’t stopped them meddling… sorry, being involved in the planning process, and their limited knowledge of heritage/conservation hasn’t stopped them being involved in the compilation of the RPS, so it should be no surprise that they feel qualified to pass comment on this competition winner.

    What’s the age profile of the councillors? And the gender split? If more than 25% of them are not middle aged males, I’ll eat my hat. Probably the closest most of them ever get to an aesthetic judgement is lying in response to the question ‘Does my bum look big in this?’

    Has anyone asked local kids what they’d think of it? I suspect they’d be far more in favour (and more in favour of something like this than of something ‘more traditional’) as it looks like the kind of sculpture that kids would interact with, and surely the opinions of locals who will be around for more than the next 20 years are more important that the opinions of locals who see their tenure on the council as a reward for blind loyalty to their birthplace?

  • #786598

    Anonymous

    @helloinsane wrote:

    Coming over from Ferrybank? There was a BP station there when I was living in Wexford, unless it’s a different site you’re talking about.

    Yip, that site. Station is long gone.

  • #786599

    Anonymous

    Ctesiphon, you nake a very good point

  • #786600

    Anonymous

    @janda wrote:

    Yip, that site. Station is long gone.

    Its a private carpark now i think isnt it? Its beside the building where the BOI is being relocated for a while.

  • #786601

    Anonymous

    @sfamato wrote:

    Its a private carpark now i think isnt it? .

    Yip
    It’s a shame they won’t something worthwhile with the space, seeing as it is straight in front of ye when you come over thebridge. Wfat was the line from Iggy Pop about a town’s “ripped backside”

  • #786602

    Anonymous

    I like the description and parti of the sculpture but I feel it’s lacking the large scale legibility needed for a site like the Wexford quays.

    Sometimes a random collection of objects is just a random collection of objects, albeit in this case with shiny pipes. Presumably because all pipes want to be shiny.

  • #786603

    Anonymous

    It is my understanding from reading Mr. Dessardo’s website that these artefacts are not just random but are remnants from the regeneration of the harbor in Wexford, which, dare I say allude to the ‘history’ of the town. To it’s industrial past maybe, they all look like articles of involved in heavy industry, perhaps?

    I expect stainless steel would be shiny, a nice contrast to the preserved rusted elements. There is a narrative to this work which i seem to understand the more I view mr. Dessardo’s other work.

    However, gray men in gray suits making decisions behind closed doors with opinion forged and influenced from god knows where, will only see ‘pipes’ and other ‘stuff’ and not a lovely statue of one of their inconsequential and forgotten town elders. C’est la vie, some may say. 😮

  • #786604

    Anonymous

    That’s kind of my problem with it. It’s trite. I find rusty metal on the site, I link it with quasi-industrial shiny metal which speaks more of oil refineries than a fishing town. There’s no engagement with the experiential quality of the place beyond the frankly uninteresting fact that these particular objects happened to be present, and the kinesthetic link seems to be limited to sitting on top of or beside things.

    The alternative to this work is not a statue of a bloke on a horse, it’s possibly something a little less pointlessly abstruse and inaccessible. There is a didactic role for public art but it needs a much lighter touch than is evident here.

  • #786605

    Anonymous

    for all those against parochial art,this is hardly a choice between the two extremes!just because the council dont want something a group of travellers could have left behind dosnt mean they insist on some viking boat ,something strikingly modern in the right way would look great,but this dosnt.

  • #786606

    Anonymous

    Exactly my point. Work like that can do more to turn people off contemporary design than engage them. Yes, not all art has to be comforting or safe, but something that tries to publically express a moment in or experience of a town should at the very least be handsome.

    The selected scheme is not handsome.

  • #786607

    Anonymous

  • #786608

    Anonymous

    @helloinsane wrote:

    is not a statue of a bloke on a horse, .

    Sorry, a tangent here I’m afraid, but do people from BC really use the term ‘Bloke’ ?
    are you of English heritage?

    When I was last in Gastown and I said ‘bloke’ people laughed at me ! ( at a very expensive Indian restaurant not far from the clock !)

  • #786609

    Anonymous

    I’m Irish. Grew up in Wexford.

    I think I was just at that restaurant.

  • #786610

    Anonymous

    do you know the Irish Bar not far from there ? can’t remember the name but they have a conservatory out the back where musicians occasionally play and they do sell good Scotch

    by the way Helloinsane you said “he selected scheme is not handsome.” the problem is it was selected, then rejected. I think that is the main point of this thread.

    People in the know select / Old men reject !

  • #786611

    Anonymous

    The Irish Heather. I know it too well.

    I’m playing devil’s advocate here – I’m beginning to suspect the councillors were right to reject the scheme, even if they did so for the wrong reasons. I’m also curious to know who the selection committee were and what the other proposals were like.

  • #786612

    Anonymous

    The selection panel consisted of:
    an Architect, Waterford City Council
    an Artist & Arts Facilitator,
    a Public Art Professional (ex-public art advisor Arts Council of Ireland)
    an Artist / Sculptor
    a County Councillor Wexford County Councillor

  • #786613

    Anonymous

    sounds like a typical irish county council nonsense scenario… I hope it doesn’t put the artist off doing more of this. I’ve seen more details of the image and having had a good look, I think it’s pretty good. It’s a shame it won’t be built

  • #786614

    Anonymous

    @dessardo wrote:

    The selection panel consisted of:
    an Architect, Waterford City Council
    an Artist & Arts Facilitator,
    a Public Art Professional (ex-public art advisor Arts Council of Ireland)
    an Artist / Sculptor
    a County Councillor Wexford County Councillor

    Dessardo..Are you the actual artist?

    If so, can you explain your work to me?

  • #786615

    Anonymous

    a clear expanation of the work is public on
    http://dessardodata4.free.fr/webwex/files/press_dessardo_wexford.htm

  • #786616

    Anonymous

    @sfamato wrote:

    Dessardo..Are you the actual artist?

    If so, can you explain your work to me?

    question 1) yes
    question 2) here is also a useful explanation about the my artistic process :
    http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/statement.html

  • #786617

    Anonymous

    I’m very impressed with the selected sculpture – well done dessardo. I hope it gets built.

    I hope your treatment by Wexford CC won’t put international artists off the idea of participating in the percent for art scheme (which is generally a good scheme).

  • #786618

    Anonymous

    @lotts wrote:

    I hope your treatment by Wexford CC won’t put international artists off the idea of participating in the percent for art scheme (which is generally a good scheme).

    I think it was Wexford Borough Council (ie the town corporation) that rejected the work, not the CC.

  • #786619

    Anonymous

    Apologies to the CC.
    Shame on Wexford Borough Council

  • #786620

    Anonymous

    i personly dont like this work but i do think it is wrong the council could reject any piece of art that is given permission by a seperate body because they wont know good art from bad!they just happen to have made the right decision here.

  • #786621

    Anonymous

    I think the work is excellent, thought/work has gone into it.

    Im confused is it still being rejected?

  • #786622

    Anonymous

    Here’s a suggestion for Wexford Borough Council…why don’t you stick up a statue of Tony Doran beaitng the arse off a scoury heifer with his hurl, and get Leo Yellow to sponsor it? That would just about sum up Wexford for me, and I`ll bet it would get approval no bother !

  • #786623

    Anonymous

    @johnfp wrote:

    ..stick up a statue of Tony Doran beaitng the arse off a scoury heifer with his hurl, and get Leo Yellow to sponsor it??????? …just about sum up Wexford for me, and I`ll bet it would get approval no bother !

    Johnfp there is a bigger story in that please do tell !

    I guess though, that something ‘Traditional’ will be erected by those Wexford Councillors and have no relevance in a few months time. What qualifications do politicians in Ireland need, is it like over here where “It’s not who you know or what you know, but what you know about who you know !”

    I have done some searches on Wexford and the Arts, it seems they are quite forward thinking yet sprinkled with a good measure of the obvious and twee. It also seems they have a reputation for rejecting public art, there seems to be quite an interesting sculpture rejected by the elders of New Ross town.

  • #786624

    Anonymous

    @dessardo wrote:

    question 1) yes
    question 2) here is also a useful explanation about the my artistic process :
    http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/statement.html

    Thanks dessardo, I’ve read through your site and looked at the pictures in more detail. I actually have a more of a appreciation for it, because now i know what you were trying to do. It has grown on me, I’ll admit that. I stil don’t know if it would be right though. It was wrong for the Town council to totally veto your deisgn though.

  • #786625

    Anonymous

    Hi,
    Being from Wexford myself I was interested to read the comments on this thread.

    I was a bit sceptical at first about the design but after careful perusal of the artist’s website I have to say that it’s beginning to grow on me. I like the way it works in that large open space.
    I always thought that the expanse of that new area of the quays was too large. The old narrow quay meant that the town was closely linked to the sea. You had to walk around the fish boxes as the boats unloaded their catches, and how exciting it was to be sandwiched between the fishing boats and the railway line as a train thundered by,
    The quays are a bit clinical now and I think that this design will help get rid of that feeling. I don’t think a standalone piece of art would work as well as this design, which is spread out across the quays.

    I think you might really have to visit the location to get a feel for it. I might drop down to have a look over Christmas, (and put in a call of support to the Borough Council).

    It certainly has provoked debate and if it does go ahead I’m sure the local media will have a field day, exactly what art should be all about.

    By the way has anyone seen the ‘Tree of Life’ by Denis O’ Connor. It’s also part of the ‘Per cent for Arts’ scheme, on th new alignment for the N30 between New Ross and Enniscorthy, I couldn’t find a photo to post but I have to say it’s one of my favourite pieces of roadside art.

    http://www.wexford.ie/wex/Departments/Arts/PressRelease/ArchivePublicArt/Name,4356,en.html

  • #786626

    Anonymous

    Very good comments

  • #786627

    Anonymous

    “inaccurate view of some skirmish that was really a good excuse for hanging protestants, that would be 1798 “

    Riiiiiiiight. That’s why it was the rebellion was led by Presbyterians. Because it was about hanging Protestants.

    It was in the vein of the American Revolution, rebelling against an established church and interference from the king of another country in local affairs.

    Another ridiculously ignorant “Catholic vs Protestant” view of Irish history.

  • #786628

    Anonymous

    Congratulations Marco Dessardo on generating a debate on guardianship of taste in the public realm.

    What is the situation now regarding the future of your excellent proposal?

  • #786629

    Anonymous

    No news from Wexford, officially, no future.
    Nevertheless, the project goes on and takes a new form: a three minutes video movie, “The Monument of Wexford”, describes the situation of the installation. The resulting Monument is the transformation of the canceled site specific sculpture “The Drainage”. This evolution considers the Wexford Borough Council, and his surprising cancellation as an additional local constraint, an actor in the installation revealing “The Monument of Wexford”
    http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/wexford_drainage_mov01.html
    http://dessardo.free.fr/site/html/wexford_drainage_text.html

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