Image above: Artist’s impression of Yeats sculpture by Conrad Shawcross, planned for Bedford Park
Planning officers at Hounslow council are recommending that the planning committee approves the proposal for a sculpture to commemorate the Nobel Prize winning Irish poet WB Yeats, in Bedford Park.
Artist Conrad Shawcross was commissioned to create a design for a piece of art work and organisers, led by poet and broadcaster Cahal Dallat, are currently fundraising for it. So far they’ve raised £84,655, which leaves them £50,334 still to go.
Yeats lived in Bedford Park with his family as a young man and the sculpture is planned to go outside St Michael & All Angels’ Church, on the corner of Bath Rd.
At first sight the sculpture might not be what you’d expect, but organiser Cahal Dallat, who is himself a poet and a resident of Chiswick, explained to The Chiswick Calendar that the WB Yeats Bedford Park Artwork Project didn’t want a statue of the great writer, but rather an art work which captured his spirit and illustrated how growing up in Bedford Park had inspired him.
Called Enwrought Light, by Conrad Shawcross, it was the line from Yeats’ poem He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven which caught the artist’s imagination, in particular the lines:
Enwrought with golden and silver light
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light
The artwork will catch ambient light, day and night, picking up on the theme of light which runs through Yeats’ poems, but also symbolising the Bohemian culture in which Yeats grew up, representing Victorian Bedford Park as a place of enlightenment: a place whose advanced egalitarian, spiritual, feminist, anti-colonial, multi-cultural, even vegetarian ideas, would become mainstream a hundred years later.
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