Monday, 23 March 2009

Visiting Another Place.......

Despite the rapidly changing weather, from an imposter's Spring back to wintery winds, I took a short drive over to north Liverpool to see Anthony Gormley's installation, Another Place. It's good to see a major work giving impetus to an area of coastal regeneration. Especially one so near a seaport, at the mouth of the Mersey.

The installation consists of 100 cast-iron, life-size figures spread out along one and a half miles of the foreshore and stretching almost a half mile out to sea.

The figures - each one weighing 650 kilos - are made from casts of the artist's own body and are shown at different stages of rising out of the sand, all of them looking out to sea, staring at the horizon in silent expectation.

The work is seen as a poetic response to the individual and universal sentiments associated with emigration - sadness at leaving, but the hope of a new future in another place.

Each figure is tagged 1 thru 100, to aid with maintenance and resiting. Some are being resited as they are on a migratory bird route and some others are affecting the tidal path of a local nearby tributary river.
My photographs do not do justice to the site, it's just so vast. One can only walk its length and admire the differing perspectives - whilst keeping a weather eye out for a rising tide.
It is certainly a place where the light conditions constantly change.
I will return.


  1. Wow! They are amazing! My first thought was uh-oh, hope no one tries to truck one home, but at 650 kilos, I don't think so! Are they a permanent exhibit?

  2. Yes Willow, this is their final resting I hear they look quite spooky as the tide rises...

  3. I so so so SO what to go and see these (as you know I'm a bit of a Gormley fan). I see you say that they are permanent fixtures now... I'm I right in thinking that originally they were only supposed to stay up for a while. I also read recently that a calander of these statues.. with scantly clothed ladies was 'banned' from Waterstones..... ho hum.... I love peoples response to this kind of art.

  4. Well let's say that the jury is still out on the permanancy issue Treesparrow, apparently on the grounds of 'pornography'. They are certainly here for ten years.
    The prudishness of some of we British never ceases to amaze me!

  5. One hundred figures to many? Thousands and thousands who left this coast for others far away? Forever? You describe it as should be. I relate to the prudishness -- common fare in the Deep South
    Thanks for George Harrison's "Guitar."

  6. I am reminded of the pope, whose name escapes me, that decided to put oak leaves on all of Michelangelo's work at St. Peters, the Sistine Chapel, and beyond. Here in the states such an artistic installation would no doubt require the beach be declared a nude beach and there would be endless pickets by the religious right to shut it down.

    I find it quite interesting and can image the effect of the tides on the viewing of it. I do wonder why he decided on walking out to sea as opposed to walking in from the sea.

  7. I think that sort of prudishness arises in people who have not experienced enough pleasure from sex and seek to censor it.

    Does he have a watch on his right wrist, or is that one of the tags?

  8. This looks awe-inspiring. I've not even heard of it.

  9. This is amazing...Id love to see it in real time...

    Thank you for sharing this.