The Millennium Sculpture, Strabane, County Tyrone, Northern Ireland
What I loved about this scene on arrival, was the split in streetlight colour evenly on each end. On the left the lights are white/blue in colour due to newly installed LED bulbs & on the right is the traditional orange light colour from the older florescent streetlights which are still waiting to be updated to LED. I imagine on my next return all these lights will be ice white in colour & long gone will be the orange glow that have aided us in dark streets all our lives. This blend of light sources & the male sculpture holding his hand out to embrace the female sculpture got me thinking on this term “When Opposites Attract”
To mark the millennium ‘Derry City & Strabane District Council‘ in conjunction with the Strabane/Lifford Development Commission, initiated a unique cross-border scheme to represent a new and shared beginning for the community. A shared cultural vision is represented in the form of 5 semi-abstract stainless steel and bronze figures each approximately 18 foot in height. Music and Dance is a great unifying and highly popular art forms throughout the locality, constitute the core theme and are interpreted by their creator Mr. Maurice Harron.
I have a funny story to share with you about these magnificent steel sculptures. They have gained the nickname “The Tinnies” due to a prankster telephoning a local taxi service one night and asking the taxi man to wait beside these sculptures for a fair under the name ‘Tinnies’. The poor taxi man sat for ages before he finally caught on the joke when he looked out of his car window and seen these giant tin men standing beside him! The story was so funny the local newspaper even printed an article on the prank 😂 Sometimes it takes the local folk to add laughter, tales & history to monuments like these. Only then will they become a true part of the local community’s spirit.