Archive for the ‘Suffolk’s County Town’ Category

Green Wind

Artathon 18: Green Wind

Green Wind

By sculptor and environmental artist Diane Maclean ‘Green Wind’ sits on top of The Tump, a sculptured earth mound on the Ravenswood housing development on the south-east edge of the town (the one time site of Ipswich Airport). Made of stainless steel the artwork consists of a dozen columns, varying in height from seven to ten metres, topped with coloured vanes that rotate in the wind. The columns are covered with a layer of oxidant that makes them change colour according to the amount of sunlight playing on them.

Full Artathon details here.


The original and the greatest … Sir Alf

Artathon 17: Sir Alf Ramsey Statue

Sir Alf Ramsey

Sir Alf Ramsey and his wife Lady Victoria Ramsey lived for more than 30 years in a modest three bedroom detached house on Valley Road, Ipswich, just a hop, skip and long throw in from chez Extreme Groundhopping. Sir Alf could often been seen walking along Norwich Road to pick up his newspapers from Goldings Newsagents (now Hunterskill Recruitment) but never without a shirt and tie.

The same was true when he headed to the town centre on a shopping excursion where yours truly almost flattened the football legend, rounding a counter in Debenhams a bit sharpish and crashing into Sir Alf. Oddly it he was that was first to apologise. Not one for suffering fools gladly he had clearly made an exception in my case.

Although he was known to have been ill for sometime it was still with great sadness that the news of his death made the headlines in late April 1999. Then ITFC chairman David Sheepshanks put it so succinctly when he said: “As much as we mourn his passing, I think it is important that we celebrate properly the remarkable life and achievements of a truly extraordinary man. To take a small club, as Ipswich Town were in the last 50’s, from Division Three (South) to the First Division Championship on limited resources was a legendary feat.”

But of course Sir Alf didn’t stop there, becoming the only manager in the history of football in this country to win both the League title and World Cup when, four years after his success with Town, and on that so so famous sun drenched day at Wembley in 1966, his England side beat West Germany 4-2 to lift the Jules Rimet trophy.

His success on the field should however not overshadow his victories off it as it was after all he that was responsible for starting the revolution that shook sense into the men in grey suits at the Football Association. His new methods propelled English football into the modern world and shook off the cosy and amateurish ways in which the game had been run for so long. He became the national side’s first true manager, responsible for all matters football and no longer a messenger boy for the international selection committee.

Despite his unparalleled success he remained a very modest man, loved the town of Ipswich, which he had adopted as his own, as the townspeople did him. A no more fitting a tribute of him exists than that of the Sir Alf Ramsey statue at the corner Portman Road and Sir Alf Ramsey Way (formerly Portman Walk and renamed in his honour) a very popular pre-match meeting point for Town fans since its unveiling in 2000.

Full Artathon details here.

Artathon on Europark

Artathon 15: The Man and Ball

Out on the eastern extremities of the town ‘The Man and Ball’ sits on the edge of the B&Q carpark in Ransomes Europark. By sculpture Giles Penny this is one of five identical bronze casts (two of the other four can be found in Portsmouth and Cheltenham) and very much along the same lines as the other commissions he has undertaken. At busy times the sculpture gets lost amidst a sea of cars so perhaps one of Penny’s other peices may have been more appropriate for the space.

Artathon 16: The Rhumba

Originally part of an exhibition in Christchurch Park ‘The Rhumba’ by Peter Blunsden was moved to Ransomes Europark in the summer of 1995. Now rather forlorn looking – covered as it is with ivy and weeds – it is constructed from pieces of steel that have been welded together to form the outline of a Cuban dancer.

View larger images in my Flickr stream here and here.

Full Artathon details here.

Beyond the Horizon

Artathon 14 of 47: Beyond the Horizon

Born in Grundisburgh, six miles north-east of Ipswich, Bartholomew Gosnold was one of the prime movers behind the colonisation of Virginia having been granted an exclusive charter by King James I to do so. In 1602 he was vice-admiral on an expedition consisting of three ships (the Susan Constant, Discovery and Godspeed) that sailed to Jamestown.

By York artist Dan Savage, “Beyond the Horizon”, situated on Orwell Quay, was commissioned to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Jamestown, the first English settlement in what is now the USA, and the Suffolk man Gosnold’s part in making it happen.

View larger image in my Flickr stream.

Full Artathon details here.

Brooding Sky…

Brooding Sky by Chevblue

… over Ipswich Waterfront. Panoramic view from Neptune Quay taken earlier today.

Artathon Mixed Bag

Artathon 11 of 47: Madonna of Ipswich

Ipswich was once a centre for religious pilgrimage with commoners and royalty alike visiting the town and, in particular, the one time St Mary’s Chapel that contained a statue of the Madonna and Child carved from oak. The chapel was shutdown on the orders of Henry VIII during the reformation and the statue taken to London for burning. However, it was rescued enroute and taken by ship to Nettuno, Italy, itself an important center of pilgrimage and still one today. This replica of the statue, by the sculptor Robert Mellamphy, is mounted on a wall in Lady Lane in modern day Ipswich roughly where the old chapel would have stood.

Artathon 12 of 47: The Trawlerman

A rich maritime Ipswich certainly has but it has never been a home for a significant fishing industry (although I’m more than happy to corrected on this) so the significance of this statue is lost on me and probably on the thousands of Sainsburys shoppers who pass it every week on their way into the grocery stores car park on Hadleigh Road.

Artathon 13 of 47: Spirit of Youth

By John Ravera, the sculptor also reponsible for ‘The Trawlerman’ (above), this piece is tucked away in a small courtyard off Museum Street, roughly opposite Arlington’s Brasserie. As with the Trawlerman this piece is cast from bronze as are other pieces by the artist near London’s Battersea Bridge, Bracknell and elsewhere.

View larger images in my Flickr stream here, here and here.

Full Artathon details here.

Red sky at night…

Red sky at night... by Chevblue

… shepherd’s delight. The sun setting over Ipswich tonight.