THOUGH wishing to withhold any further opinions on the recent inspired proposal of a local lady artist to have a mermaid sculpture on the Black Midden rocks, the continual comments in the letters pages of the News Guardian have been noted with some reserve.
Such an artwork has variable impact in the eyes and mind of individual beholders and the word ‘copy’ has been mentioned.
I took some photos of the cruise liner Eurodam on its last visit, in particular one of the liner passing the Middens on its leaving the Tyne.
The photo only confirms – in my eye – the vision of the artist, such vision paying tribute to the Copenhagen figure, not just copying it.
It appears appropriate to copy a well known local sculpture, the nearest I got to that in my previous letter was to suggest that a ‘modern’ form of mermaid could have more local support than the realistic form adopted by the artist.
My mention of the Tyne Tunnel Buoys sculpture was to admire the theme previously adopted at the Fish Quay sands, and any copy would have equal impact and merit.
Also, a mermaid is quite nautical.
Those who believe the Black Middens should remain in their natural state, without artworks, piers (but with sewage pipes) have a good case, though I find the Middens have little visual character compared to the rock formations at Cullercoats.
The photo illustrates the impact of shipping passing the Black Middens, in a line hopefully always clearly designated and safe, by buoys and associated features.
The liners and DFDS daily ferry shipping should be greatly impressed by such a sculpture and may well wish to contribute to the funding.
MR A M JOHNSON