Ten things to celebrate about Swindon No 4: The sculptures. A – ‘Looking to the future’
‘Looking to the Future 1985. Artist: Jon Buck. Material: Glass Fibre Resin. Project Details: This sculpture was completed by the first artist in residence during the development of West Swindon and funded by Thamesdown Borough Council, Southern Arts and Property 3.’
Swindon is home to an assortment of statues and sculptures – more than I know of I’m sure. Some of them are not to everyone’s taste and arguments rage about whether the council should spend money on such things when services are always crying out for funding. It was ever thus. Whatever the merits or otherwise of that argument, on a personal level, I rather like the fact that they exist even if I don’t find all of them to my personal taste. They are often tucked away with nothing drawing attention to them – one just chances upon them when walking the many foot/cycle paths around Swindon. This one being a case in point. It’s so long since I walked this particular route I’d almost forgotten about it. Called ‘Looking to the Future’ it was installed in 1989 when the area of West Swindon was developing. It’s somewhat appropriate that I should ‘chance upon’ it today being as how, now I’m two-thirds of the way through my degree, looking to the future is what I’m beginning to do.
Part of the West Swindon Sculpture walk, this one is located between the West Swindon Centre and Ashington House pharmacy. From the road one can see the pond and the footpath but not the figures as they are tucked away in the corner. It was nice to see it again today – it’s been years. It’s a pity though that the fountain in that pond is no longer working.
There’s a PDF file on the internet that has a map of the walk and some information about each sculpture.
Apropos this particular sculpture, the excellent Swindon Viewpoint have in their wonderful archive collection a film of the artist, Jon Buck, talking about the sculpture and showing it being created. Art comes to life! just wonderful!
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