Two sandstone blocks are set at an angle to each other giving the appearance of splitting, they are 130cm apart at the front and 70cm at the rear. Between them a fan shape of steel tubes has been constructed, the larger tubes at the bottom and rear, the smaller ones higher up and at the front of the sculpture. The artist is quoted as stating that the sculpture is about the mythical Icarus, and that it celebrates the liberation of the steel from the rock. The weight and restrictive shape of the stone block trying to hold down and encase the steel which escapes splitting the rock in two.
It was decided to ask the Sculpture Company for advice and they recommended a competition to be run for West Midlands students who are in full-time education including post-graduates. The winner would be given a cash prize of £5,000 with £2,000 going to their college. The theme of the sculpture was to be left open to students, though they were asked to bear in mind the material and company image of Sterling Tubes Ltd and the availability of Stainless steel tubing.
The competition was in three stages, all entrants to submit a 2-dimensional design, from which three entrants would be shortlisted to produce marquette and the landscaping arrangements. The company would give technical help and a maximum production budget of £5,000 excluding materials. Thirdly the winner would be selected and the commission completed under the guidance of the Sculpture Company. A judging panel comprising Bill Good, Managing Director of Sterling Tubes Ltd, Philomena Davidson-Davis, Managing Director of the Sculpture Company, and John Tomlinson, Birmingham West M.E.P. was established.
Michael Scheuermann was announced the winner on 10th January 1997.
The sculpture celebrated the centenary of Sterling Tubes Ltd the company decided to commission a sculpture as an entrance feature to its very drab premises in Green Lane.
PMSA recording information