« Previous | Main | Next »

Mussolini's palace, for the birds.

Post categories:

Eddie Mair | 11:40 UK time, Friday, 12 September 2008

Nigel Wrench writes: "Something a little unusual in the woods. Rather splendid winter homes for animals, based on palaces built by (human) despots. Below is one of the artists responsible, Bruce Gilchrist, and Sandra Drew, director of Stour Valley Arts which commissioned the work. Both they and the sculptures will be on PM this afternoon.


And another shot of the Mussolini birdhouse. Pretty isn't it?

Here's the building it's based on, Mussolini's "Square Colosseum", regarded as an iconic piece of fascist architecture, if there can be such a thing.

There are three structures, just off a path in the woods. They make up a work called Super Kingdom, a commentary, the artists say, on human migration (Dover isn't far away) and the pressure on housing in the south-east (Ashford is close too) and what that might do to wildlife.
This is another of the works, originally to be based on Stalin's Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw, now, say the artists, rather more like an upside-down version of an unbuilt skyscraper planned by Lenin.

Mr Gilchrist, seen below with the Lenin skyscraper, is to film, with his partner in the artistic enterprise known as London Fieldworks, Jo Joelson, what the local wildlife do with these structures over the winter. In some, there's food waiting for hibernating animals. Mr Gilchrist hopes buzzards will set up home on the top.


Ms Drew and Mr Gilchrist (right) in front of what's meant to be a representation of Ceacescu's Palace of the People in Bucharest. Real one just below, judge for yourself.

Beats the odd birdhouse and they're an extraordinary sight if you're out walking in the woods.


Driving home, I came across these sculptures placed in a field. I've no idea of what the work's called or who the artist might be. Ideas?"

And there's more information here.


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.