Skateboarders strike sculpture in two hours

By 9 March, 2011 32

scrapes

The Canberra Times has the interesting news that the Michael Le Grand sculpture “Ukiyo-e” installed yesterday in Civic Square has already been damaged by intrepid skateboarders.

ACT Museums and Galleries director Peter Haynes said Ukiyo-e, a 2m blue sculpture by Michael le Grand, was installed in Civic Square yesterday morning.

By 3pm, skateboarders had damaged its paintwork.

”It’s fairly obvious that that sort of damage is possible,” Mr Haynes said.

”I didn’t expect it to be possible within two hours or so of being installed but it’s there and there’s nothing much you can do about it … The artist was aware this might happen and actually said to me … that skateboarders will love it.”

Now if only we could harness that enthusiasm and efficiency.

UPDATE: Above is a picture of the damage done to a couple of the tubes. Also this sign has appeared which, it is obviously hoped, will deter the grommets.

please do not touch the sculpture thank you

More pictures of the sculpture as a whole taken yesterday are available

[First filed: Mar 9, 2011 @ 9:53]

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32 Responses to Skateboarders strike sculpture in two hours
#1
Diggety10:58 am, 09 Mar 11

Skateboarders 1st, public art 2nd.

It’s not the best place for something like that.

#2
Jivrashia10:59 am, 09 Mar 11

Pardon the cynic in me, but what is ‘Ukiyo-e‘ about it?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukiyo-e

If there is even the remotest resemblance then it is to the famous “The Great Wave (tsunami) of Kanagawa” picture.

In other words this sculpture symbolises a…. tsunami?

#3
EvanJames11:06 am, 09 Mar 11

Diggety said :

Skateboarders 1st, public art 2nd.

It’s not the best place for something like that.

So where would the best place be?

#4
johnboy11:09 am, 09 Mar 11

Can’t say most other public art around town has a problem with tagging as far as I’ve seen.

#5
p111:15 am, 09 Mar 11

johnboy said :

Can’t say most other public art around town has a problem with tagging as far as I’ve seen.

Was it tagged? I assumed they meant that skateboarders had damaged the paint be grinding their skateboards on those awesome bits of blue steel which appear to be made for that purpose…

#6
johnboy11:16 am, 09 Mar 11

Er no, not tagged, got in my head someone was saying it would be. move on, nothing to see here.

#7
Vagabond1:22 pm, 09 Mar 11

I reckon the artist must be stoked with all this publicity! There’s some pretty simple design solutions when installing these things that will stop skaters from skating them.

Here’s a pic of the vandalism: http://media.skateboard.com.au/forum/images/sculpture_grinds.jpg

Apparently Mr Haynes will be on ABC666 at 2pm today talking about it

#8
Diggety1:59 pm, 09 Mar 11

p1 said :

johnboy said :

Can’t say most other public art around town has a problem with tagging as far as I’ve seen.

Was it tagged? I assumed they meant that skateboarders had damaged the paint be grinding their skateboards on those awesome bits of blue steel which appear to be made for that purpose…

That’s what I thought too. It would be way too good to pass up for a skater.

Just lift it off the ground a meter or two, I mean FFS, surely this was always going to happen.

#9
Holden Caulfield3:16 pm, 09 Mar 11

Grinding on poles? I thought you had to go to Fyshwick for that.

#10
johnboy4:20 pm, 09 Mar 11

Vagabond said :

I reckon the artist must be stoked with all this publicity! There’s some pretty simple design solutions when installing these things that will stop skaters from skating them.

Here’s a pic of the vandalism: http://media.skateboard.com.au/forum/images/sculpture_grinds.jpg

Apparently Mr Haynes will be on ABC666 at 2pm today talking about it

Nice of them to document their work!

#11
Davo1114:33 pm, 09 Mar 11

Vagabond said :

There’s some pretty simple design solutions when installing these things that will stop skaters from skating them.

OR skaters could just understand that when their trucks slide against painted steel, its going to remove the paintwork *rolls eyes*

Hopefully they will catch them and make them pay for the damage.

#12
astrojax4:49 pm, 09 Mar 11

vandalism sucks and is the sign of a minimalist IQ…

#13
Skidbladnir6:52 pm, 09 Mar 11

Its not rocket surgery to predict that something made of curved steel in an unmonitored public space routinely filled with skateboarders might attract the attention of those wanting to improve their madskillz.

But its quite strange that a public body visibly entrusted with the property of others would intentionally put a pile of pipes\sculpture\artwork in a public space without any form of risk assessment\mitigation strategies.

For reference, it looks like it has mostly been exhibited in large open fields\beaches before, and it is worth $70,000

#14
Aeek10:16 pm, 09 Mar 11

Vandalism? This isn’t destroying a wall or a letter box for the lolz.
Damaged yes, but was the intent there?

#15
wildturkeycanoe11:23 pm, 09 Mar 11

If the “artist” wanted people to not touch the “artwork”, surely something a warning sign a little more prominent would be called for. But then, the warning sign would take away from the “visual aesthetics” of the piece. Ha, ha, ha! I have to laugh at some of the things people think are art these days. If my 3 y.o saw this he’d jump up on it straight away thinking it was some new kind of jungle gym. What else could it be! Good on the boarders for riding the tsunami. I personally can see this being a trip hazard and would like the government to step in to place some signage or barriers to prevent the general public from tripping on the object in discussion.

#16
Pommy bastard9:04 am, 10 Mar 11

“Art” critics come in many forms…

#17
Disinformation9:22 am, 10 Mar 11

Two small raised round bolt heads along that smooth surface would have instantly solved the problem.
Most of the public artworks, chairs, ballustrades or otherwise flat edges in Civic have protrusions on them to prevent grinding. It’s not rocket surgery. The consideration has been in the public forum for at least 14 years.

#18
p110:06 am, 10 Mar 11

Disinformation said :

Two small raised round bolt heads along that smooth surface would have instantly solved the problem..

Or, surround the sculpture with a forest of razor sharp stakes and coat the tips with some sort of slow acting lethal poison.

#19
noms10:50 am, 10 Mar 11

Yet more lame, crap public art for Canberra. The public should be allowed to vote on whether a piece gets approved and where it is placed.

#20
Erg011:02 am, 10 Mar 11

I’m skeptical that the quality of the art would be improved with more involvement by the general public. Bearing in mind that the average citizen doesn’t give enough of a toss to vote for art, I’d be entirely unsurprised if every proposal was rejected by those who would vote: embittered rival artists and the “don’t spend my taxes on that crap” crew.

Besides, I like it.

#21
Pommy bastard12:22 pm, 10 Mar 11

noms said :

Yet more lame, crap public art for Canberra. The public should be allowed to vote on whether a piece gets approved and where it is placed.

Hear hear!! Bravo that chap!!

Far too sensible to be implemented though.

#22
Gungahlin Al1:15 pm, 10 Mar 11

I am constantly amazed that Arts ACT does not seem to regard “resilience against vandalism” as a key design criterion? I would have thought that was a “no brainer”?
It was a core consideration I raised during the first design meeting for the Gungahlin bunyip statue. I certainly hope it was carried through on.

#23
rockatansky6:10 pm, 03 Sep 11

As they say “If you see it, skate it”.

#24
Watson6:32 pm, 03 Sep 11

p1 said :

Disinformation said :

Two small raised round bolt heads along that smooth surface would have instantly solved the problem..

Or, surround the sculpture with a forest of razor sharp stakes and coat the tips with some sort of slow acting lethal poison.

Haha!

If you don’t want art to be touched, put it in a museum, not on the street. I like skateboarding (not to do, to watch – it livens up the place) and I do not mind them skating on the street furniture at all.

#25
Deref7:09 pm, 03 Sep 11

Skidbladnir said :

Its not rocket surgery to predict that something made of curved steel in an unmonitored public space routinely filled with skateboarders might attract the attention of brainless morons wanting to demonstrate their contempt for anyone except themselves.

But its quite strange that a public body visibly entrusted with the property of others would intentionally put a pile of pipes\sculpture\artwork in a public space without any form armed guard against sociopaths.

I fixed that for you.

#26
thatsnotme7:38 pm, 03 Sep 11

Gungahlin Al said :

I am constantly amazed that Arts ACT does not seem to regard “resilience against vandalism” as a key design criterion? I would have thought that was a “no brainer”?
It was a core consideration I raised during the first design meeting for the Gungahlin bunyip statue. I certainly hope it was carried through on.

Interestingly, a new sculpture has showed up outside of my work building (the AON building on London Cct) that looks very similar to the central part of this sculpture. Imagine the large wavy middle part, without the pipes sticking out the sides. I have no idea whether it’s the same artist – the design and colour are very close to this one though.

It has been installed on a plinth though, with skateboarder unfriendly metal bars jutting up around the edge of the plinth. Perhaps lessons have been learned after all.

#27
Henry827:39 pm, 03 Sep 11

Watson said :

I like skateboarding (not to do, to watch – it livens up the place) and I do not mind them skating on the street furniture at all.

So you’re willing to pay for damage done to “street furniture”?

#28
whitelaughter12:33 am, 04 Sep 11

Watson said :

p1 said :

If you don’t want art to be touched, put it in a museum, not on the street. I like skateboarding (not to do, to watch – it livens up the place) and I do not mind them skating on the street furniture at all.

Fair.
Although, musuems are a waste. We don’t have *time* to visit museums: we spend far too much time in queues in banks/offices/shopfronts etc.
Smarter: Let the staff in any location where we spend time in a queue, choose a piece of art from those available, so we can admire it while waiting. The ‘wisdom of crowds’ will ensure a decent selection, especially since the staff know they’ll get an earful if they’ve been foolish enough to chose a poor piece.

#29
Watson8:26 am, 04 Sep 11

Henry82 said :

Watson said :

I like skateboarding (not to do, to watch – it livens up the place) and I do not mind them skating on the street furniture at all.

So you’re willing to pay for damage done to “street furniture”?

I am. Also don’t mind a few scratches on the street furniture. At least it makes the city look lived in. If it actually breaks because a few skateboards go over it, I have some serious doubt about the quality and conclude that my taxes are being used to pay for crap that is not up to the job.

#30
Henry822:18 pm, 04 Sep 11

Watson said :

is not up to the job.

I completely disagree, a bench was designed to be sat on, not jumped on (at an awkward angle) by someone wanting to make an epic youtube video

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