Artists have been wowed after a first look at the raw material they will work with as part of the exciting Boston Buoys project.
All four were overwhelmed by the size of the redundant Wash buoys, each weighing between three and five tonnes, but eager to tackle such a prestigious project.
They were taken on a tour of the buoys where they are stored at the Port of Boston, to give them early indication of the tasks ahead.
Six of the giant buoys will receive artistic treatment ranging from painted scenes to ceramic mosaics to metal adornment to illustrate Boston’s maritime heritage.
The six decorated buoys, five donated by the Port, could be joined by up to another nine to make a Boston Buoys heritage trail of 15.
The project is funded by Transported, the Boston arts organisation, and supported by the Port of Boston, Boston Borough Council, Boston Big Local, the Environment Agency and Boston in Bloom. The final position of the Buoys will be determined in the coming months from a number of sites in and around the town following consultation and discussion with authorities and land owners.
The artists chosen to reinterpret the buoys will begin work in September and there will be some public involvement. It is hoped the finished artworks will be in place next year, in time to help mark the 400th anniversary of Boston’s part in the story of the Pilgrim Fathers.
Carrie Reichardt is planning to encase two buoys in mosaics of ceramic tiles. She is well practised at working to giant scale – she has covered her house, studio and vehicles in mosaics of ceramic tiles (pictured).
Jo Chapman will also take on the challenge of two buoys. Her public art includes making an interpretive cast bronze buoy sculpture for the Shetland fishing industry (pictured), sculptures for the world-famous Chelsea Flower Show and artwork for Anglia Ruskin University.
Husband and wife team Bex and David Simon are the artist blacksmith upcyclers for BBC 1’s Money For Nothing programme. Their public art has included large-scale sculptural commissions for Westminster Magistrates’ Court, reflecting its former use as the Yorkshire Stingo Tavern.