PMSA National Recording Project - South Yorkshire

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough

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ArtistMaker: MAYNE, David
TitleOfWork: 'Urns' and 'Fire Basket'
DescriptionOfPhoto: -
DateOfCreation: 1997-1998
Dimensions: 190 cm high and 43 cm square at the base.
Medium: wrought metal
Location: Fairfield Park
AtoZReference: p.48 7B
Postcode: S63
Street: Manvers Way
TownOrVillage: Wath upon Dearne
AreaInTown: Fairfield Park
MetropolitanBorough: Rotherham
Photographer: Andy Pollard
ImageCopyright: Andy Pollard
AccessionNumber: urns
Description: 'Urns' : Eight silver painted identical cast urns. The surface of each has objects from the mining industry protruding from it: a carbide battery, horseshoe, conveyor belt tracks, "snap tin", bolts, chain, penny, pickaxe head, spanner, and a pneumatic drill.
In original meetings the area was being developed as a formal garden. Mayne therefore used the idea of the classical urn, but with mining artefacts cast into its surface. The urns are sited in pairs either side of four paths which intersect in a circular garden between two of the industrial units in Fairfield Park.
'Fire Basket' : The sculpture takes the form of basket-like shape on top of black painted twin steel columns. The shape is taken from the fire baskets lowered into a mine shaft to assist in ventilating the mine. The central section of the upper shape is stained to represent flames. The columns refer to pillar and stall method of mining coal. [1] The piece is sited between the garden area in Fairfielf Park and Manvers Way in the middle of a grassed area.

Commission: Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council. Two artists were involved, David Mayne and Tracey Heyes, but they worked separately with their own budgets on the site. The brief was for site specific artworks and it was clear that this included making references to the mining industry. The urns were sited by Mayne and cast at Durham Foundry Ltd., Sheffield.

Comment: This landscaped area in Fairfield Park was intended for leisure use by people working in the various companies with premises in the industrial park. Whether the area will ever be used as a garden is unclear as the general area is still not fully developed.

References: [1] Interview with artist: 25/2/2003

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Last updated September 18, 2006