Stockley obelisk

Stockley advises on artwork for Whitworth Park

A new six metre high obelisk has been unveiled at Whitworth Park on Manchester's Oxford Road.

The monument by French artist Cyprien Gaillard, made in collaboration with design engineers, Stockley, and Whitworth Gallery curator, Mary Griffiths, uses recycled bricks and concrete from demolished houses in Moss Side and Birley Fields, Hulme.

Gaillard said: "I have long been fascinated with the traditional obelisk form and creating this new one for the Whitworth Park I wanted bring in elements of the history of the area, while making it a modern structure."

The obelisk sits on a 150-year-old plinth, which until the Second World War was home to a statue by George Tinworth called "Christ Blessing the Little Children." The statue was removed to protect it but unfortunately it never made its way back to the park.

Stephen O'Malley, of Stockley, said: "We've really enjoyed working with Cyprien and Mary on the sculpture and we're really pleased with the outcome. We've worked with several artists in the past including Gustav Metzger and Dan Dubowtiz, and it's very rewarding to see how our expertise can help artists realise their vision."

For the 2009 Manchester International Festival Stockley provided engineering assistance to help the organisers and artists. Stockley worked closely with deconstructivist sculpture Gustav Metzger on his "Flailing Trees" installation which comprises 21 willow trees, inverted and cast in concrete. The sculpture is now permanently located in grounds of the Whitworth Art Gallery. Stockley also worked closely with Dan Dubowitz to create the Cutting Room Square Sentinels. These five, six metre high pre-cast concrete monoliths frame an image of Ancoats, forming the back drop to the new public square.

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