Sunday, September 09, 2007

B of the Bang!

In January 2005 a landmark monument was unveiled in East Manchester to commemorate the Commonwealth Games which Manchester hosted extremely successfully in 2002. The monument is meant to look like a firework exploding. It was named 'B of the Bang!' after a quote by Olympic sprinter Lindford Christie saying that he started his races on the B of the Bang.

It is famous as at 56m it is the tallest sculpture in the country, and it is also installed to lean at an angle of 30 degrees. This artwork cost £1.4 million. It is intended to be a tourist attraction and to bring visitors to the area.

I drive past this sculpture regularly and all I can say is I can see nothing artistic about it. I have stared and studied it so many times to try really hard to find something about it to appreciate, but there is nothing. It is a rusty irregular eye-sore. I'm sorry, try as hard as I can I cannot see anything redeeming about this terrible over-hyped waste of public money.

For what they paid they could have at least painted it a nice colour. This special steel it is made of that develops a weather proof coating can only be called rusty. As you look along most of the spikes the welds that join the parts into a complete spike are really visible. The spikes are not evenly distributed around the central hub as a firework explotion is in the air. They look like they have been spaced into systematic groups to make installation easier.

On the subject of installation, you are probably aware that the entire sculpture is still fenced off for safety. This is because the spikes are slowly all falling off. So the compromise in spacing the spikes that stinks of ease of installation has not even made the statue secure. The welds that are visible are not that way for strength. In even light winds some of the spikes are oscillating wildly which is obviously going to speed up the failure rate.

I have already questioned some of Manchester City Council's decisions on here before but whoever payed some drugged up hippie millions to design this awful and dangerous rusty cock-up needs their head examining. Hell you can't unveil something 2 1/2 years after an event it is meant to commemorate. Dig it up now and don't waste any more money 'maintaining' it. Failing that at least paint it a better colour to hide the welds. When it was being built there was a speeded up 5 minute video of it being constructed. They should leave it recording and we can see if it falls down in less time :).


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