A Place For Words: Glade

What happened?

Tynedale Council's centrepiece for the Front St Redevelopment Scheme in Prudhoe, GLADE is a collaborative work between Ira Lightman and Dan Civico, completed in 2008. Noting the symmetry of the letters in the town name, Ira ran a project called Prudhoe Up Down and Inside Out, creating a perspex wipe-clean screen on which people were invited to write remarks about Prudhoe on both sides of the screen, in all directions, threading their remarks through the word PrudHoE. Ira then created a river of text, combining the remarks in one twisting seamless ribbon.

Dan Civico was asked to create a shelter structure, featuring the text river sandblasted onto glass, sturdy yet transparent. His combination of glass, steel and oak functions as a kind of peaceful tree clearing to Ira, so he suggested the name GLADE for it.

Project Gallery

Glade 1

The river of text on the shelter designed by Dan Civco. Photo: David Williams

Glade 2

A detail from the river of text. Photo: Ira Lightman

Glade 3

Prudhoe residents add their remarks to the Perspex screen. Photo: David Williams

What made it work?

  • It helps when the artists are approachable, and willing to explain the project to councillors and town people who are unfamiliar with art projects.
  • Having a good track record, having won awards, and being able to show how art is one way of bringing - usually good - publicity to a place.
  • Public Art is all about a strong initial idea, and then adaptability in producing the final work. The initial idea was to have a big screen of text on a large single sheet of glass. Making the shelter just as transparent, but with smaller component pieces of glass, was a practical issue, but it improved the design.

Further information and links:

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