Bushy Park is a large suburban park situated between the mature residential suburbs of Terenure, Templeogue and Rathfarnham. Mostly frequented by people who live in the surrounding areas and well-used by local sports clubs, it accommodates a variety of outdoor facilities, amenities and landscapes, from woodland and an ornamental lake to riverbanks, meadow and grassland. The park originated in the year 1700 and was purchased by Dublin Corporation (now Dublin City Council) in 1951.
This commission invited artists to explore Bushy Park, its assorted terrains and contemporary uses, and identify a space within the park that resonates and provokes a sensitive and considered aesthetic response.
Through a two-stage open competition, artists were asked to explore Bushy Park, its assorted terrains and contemporary uses, and identify a space within the park that resonates and provokes a sensitive and considered aesthetic response. Full details of the commissioning process are included in the Commission Brief.
The Selection Panel for Bushy Park included:
- Councillor Anne Feeney (South East Area public representative)
- Anne Talbot (Terenure/Templeogue/Rathfarnham local community representative)
- Michael Noonan (representative of DCC Parks and Landscape Services)
- Liz Coman (representative of the City Arts Office)
- Noel Kelly (representative of Sculpture Dublin Steering Group)
- Paula Murphy (representative of the Sculpture Dublin Steering Group in place of Hugh Lane Gallery representative)
- Eilís O’Connell (external art expert)
Non-voting Chair: Ruairí Ó Cuív (DCC Public Art Officer)
“I’m delighted and honoured to be awarded the Bushy Park Sculpture Dublin commission. For a long time I have wanted to create an artwork in a public park and I am very excited to be working with Sculpture Dublin and Dublin City Council Parks & Landscape Services on such a great project. The sculpture will engage with the public in its slender presence and reflect the remarkable environment of Bushy Park.”
Corban Walker has proposed an elegant, large-scale work based on many configurations of a cellular grid. The interplay between projecting and recessed sections of the sculpture will create a lively, joyful vision of simplicity that belies the complexity of its making. Standing at 8 metres high, the minimalist work will enhance the reflective and meditative environment of the duck pond, and assert itself as a distinctive new feature of the park.
Corban Walker was educated at NCAD, Dublin, and since the mid-1990s has gained recognition for his installations, sculptures and drawings using industrial materials to explore philosophies of architectural scale and spatial perception. He has exhibited in museums and galleries – and realised important public art commissions – worldwide. Walker’s work is part of numerous public and private collections, including the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York and IMMA, Dublin. He represented Ireland at the Venice Biennale in 2011 and received the Pollock Krasner Award in 2015. A member of Aosdána, the Crawford Art Gallery, Cork will present an exhibition of his work in 2022.