IMO commissions seafarers’ memorial for London HQ
Maritime Organization has announced a short list of three leading sculptors
to create a memorial to the worlds seafarers at the Organizations
riverside headquarters on the Albert Embankment in London. The sculpture will
primarily serve as a memorial to all seafarers who have been lost at sea, but
it will also be a reminder of the pivotal role seafaring plays in world trade
and development. Some 95% of cargo is moved by sea.
exhibition of models, drawings and other material by the short listed sculptors,
Juan Munoz (Spain), Bill Woodrow (United Kingdom) and Michael Sandle (United
Kingdom), will go on display at the IMO from 15 September 2000, with the final
choice being announced by the IMO Secretary-General, Mr William A. ONeil
on World Maritime Day, 28 September 2000. The unveiling of the completed work
is scheduled for World Maritime Day 2001.
ONeil said it had been thought for some time that the IMO Headquarters,
with its prominent position opposite the Houses of Parliament, was an excellent
site for such a long overdue and unique monument. "In our discussions it
was decided early on that the sculpture chosen should be figurative in nature
and visually striking. The reason for this is that every delegate from each
of the 158 Member States of IMO, and every visitor to the building, should be
immediately aware of the sculptures significance," he said.
memorial project is being financed from a Trust Fund established two years ago
to mark IMOs 50th anniversary. Other projects earmarked for
the fund include the establishment of an additional teaching chair at the World
Maritime University in Sweden and fellowships for the training of seafarers.
key contributor to the fund is the International Transport Workers Federation
whose General Secretary, David Cockroft, said: "We welcome this memorial
and hope it will remind people of the hazards faced daily by the worlds
Munoz (b. 1953), Spain
based Juan Munoz has exhibited widely in Europe and America. He was recently
the subject of a retrospective at the Pallacio Velasquez in Madrid, and in 1998
he showed a huge installation at the Dia Center for the Arts in New York.
of his most recent commissions was for Sunderland, in northeast England. This
consists of a group of 20 nearly life size bronze figures set on the sea front
and appearing like the members of a court. One critic spoke of an "Alice
in Wonderland feel" hanging over the whole elegant scene.
Sandle (b. 1936), Britain
Sandle lives in Germany and is Professor for sculpture at the Akademie der Bildenden
Kunste in Karlsruhe. He has executed many public sculptures including Memorial
for the Victims of a Helicopter Disaster (1985) in Mannheim, St George
and the Dragon (1988) in London and the Malta Siege Bell Memorial
(1992) in Malta
1988 he was given a retrospective at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London.
Sandy Nairn from Gallery described Sandle as: "deliberately something of
an outsider; his work nonetheless reaches a wide audience and he is known for
his impressive, dramatic sculptures".
Woodrow (b. 1948), Britain
Woodrow has exhibited widely since the late 1970s including major exhibitions
in New York, Edinburgh, Cologne and London, the city in which he lives and works.
More recently he was one of three artists chosen to create temporary sculptures
for the empty plinth in Trafalgar Square and his work, Regardless of History,
currently occupies the site.
site-specific work reflects on the nature of the location as can be seen with
his sculptures at the British Council headquarters in Bristol and in the lobby
of the new British Library. In the last few years he has moved from the use
of recycled materials to cast bronze; he has addressed various political and
ecological issues in his sculptures.