Comment // Environment

Ugly Meaningless Art — Shropshire

Surprisingly the BBC propaganda machine accurately reports that Shropshire is spending even more money - now more than £1 million - on its own special piece of ugly meaningless art. In this case a 40ft high stone arch called the Quantun Leap, to supposedly celebrate the birth of Charles Darwin. 

Shropshire is yet another authority that is desperately short of money for vital public services yet it can still find a £1 million for meaningless art. But there's more to this than meets the eye since ugly meaningless art is popping up in towns and cities across UK, and sometimes in country areas. Examples are the Angel of the North, Wicker Man on the Somerset levels, gaudy metal clowns Birkenhead, distorted yellow creatures in Liverpool, a phallus or 'Wicked Willy' Basingstoke, Totem Poles and giant birds Plymouth........a giant horse's head Marble Arch London........the list goes on and on.

Apart from the cost, and their ugly usually meaningless nature, the sculptures have a key attribute. They distort reality and are designed to dumb us down and depress us. They particularly work on the subconscious mind, which struggles to make meaning of them, rather than consciously filling us with the beauty and joy of real art.

Strangely, in some parts of the country Local Councillors have discovered that if they dare ask just what these things are about and why the taxpayer should be forced to pay for them, the Council turns on them and brands the Councillor a trouble maker. In one case a Councillor who asked who had originally suggested such an artwork, never mind why it was commissioned and paid for with public money, was told by Council Officers that they could not tell him due to Data Protection. When he questioned this ridiculous state of affairs he was faced with an investigation into his 'inappropriate' conduct.

It appears that the ugly meaningless art is defended by the 'establishment' with almost religious zeal. But which religion? Perhaps the Angel of the North and the Somerset Wicker man are there to tell us something. Astute Christians and Muslims should perhaps be aware that children are now being encouraged to dance around the Angel of the North and lay flowers on its 'birthday' anniversary. The first Somerset Wicker man was set on fire - accident or design? Has an unsuspecting British public allowed the devilish art into our green and pleasant land?