COLD WINTER TREE by Grace Weir
Fingal County Council, in conjunction with the Erigo Group is delighted to announce the commissioning of a major new piece of contemporary public art by internationally renowned artist, Grace Weir, for the impressive new Vantage Business Park located at Coldwinters, just off the N2 in North County Dublin. The Flood family, in association with Fingal County Council Arts Office have appointed Grace, to create a new bronze sculpture for the landscaped grounds of Vantage Business Park, due to open in 2020.
Grace Weir is a member of Aosdana and is widely considered to be one of Ireland’s greatest living artists. Her most notable work of public art, “Cloud Star Boat Map’ can be seen on Essex St in Temple Bar. Her work features in private and public collections across the world including a major solo show at IMMA in 2015.
Fingal County Council has introduced specific planning conditions in its County Development Plan, where all private developments of a certain scale proposed for the county are encouraged as a condition of planning to engage with Fingal Arts Office in commissioning an artist to make a piece of public art. Fingal County Council’s Arts Office together with its Planning Department, have begun the process of commissioning artworks in various new contexts throughout the county.
The Erigo Group is a Dublin based, property development company constructing several large industrial buildings, which will be used as warehouses, production, manufacturing or office facilities. Its development at Coldwinters, Vantage Business Park, enjoys significant road profile as it fronts the N2, just off the M50 motorway, and is located in the Dublin Enterprise Zone, a pro-business environment. This particular art commission arises from the visionary and pioneering approach that informs all Erigo Group developments.
The family business has demonstrated a real and valuable commitment to investing in the arts and culture. This public art commission process between Fingal County Council, the Erigo Group and the artist demonstrates a forward-looking and progressive interaction between art and business and industry & is a flagship example of how to promote contemporary art in different contexts, for new audiences.
These commissioning partnerships form part of Fingal County Council’s INFRASTRUCTURE Public Art Programme under our “Buildings and Public Spaces” Panel. INFRASTRUCTURE was widely advertised by open call in 2018. It attracted the interest of over three hundred of Ireland’s most exciting emerging and established artists. A selection of artists were considered from this submission process for this public art commission. They were invited to develop detailed proposals by Erigo Group Director, Laurence Flood, assisted by curator Aisling Prior and Fingal County Council Public Art Co-ordinator Caroline Cowley. Grace Weir was awarded the commission for her exciting concept for the site; “COLD WINTER TREE”.
“The term Coldwinters or Buaile an Gheimhridh, translates as a pen or enclosure from the winter cold or the inclemency of winter. An intriguing name, abounding with an imagined back story, its descriptiveness brings to mind a scene from a Beckettian stage play.”
Grace Weir, whose family are the Dukes and the Weirs from St Margaret’s, is an artist of international standing. It was this personal connection to the place that really sparked her interest in making a sculpture for the Coldwinters location. For this commission, Grace has proposed to cast a real, fully grown tree in bronze. This mature tree, with its trunk spreading and forking into smaller branches which will be growing in all directions, will represent a natural order of dissemination. The sculpture will incorporate the bronze casting of words that conjure up the particular character of the location, Coldwinters, and the nature of the site and the activity therein. The new Vantage Business Park will shortly become a busy nexus, filled with activity as a site for manufacture, storage and distribution.
"A three- dimensional ‘bronze poem’, the proposed ‘word tree’ sculpture will be dynamically read from different angles. While situated in a specific place, ‘COLD WINTER TREE’ will connect people’s imaginations both in time and space to other locations and moments, both near and far.” Grace Weir
Grace is excited to be making a new piece of sculpture and looks forward to the challenge of casting a full size tree in bronze, a process that will take between up to 8 months in the studio and foundry.
“I value working in the public arena, outside of the gallery and museum, and engaging with people working in other fields. The personal, family connection with the area makes this commission particularly special.” Grace Weir
For further details;
Caroline Cowley, Fingal County Council Public Art Co-Ordinator
01 870 8449
Laurence Flood, Director, The Erigo Group
photograph Laurence Flood Erigo Group & Artist Grace Weir at the new Vantage Business Park Site, Coldwinters, N2