Tuesday, 03 August 2021

Sculpture completes roundabout makeover

A 10ft tall wire sculpture has been installed on an entrance roundabout in Henley to complete its transformation

A 10ft tall wire sculpture has been installed on an entrance roundabout in Henley to complete its transformation.

The figure, designed by artist Rachel Ducker, depicts a woman appearing to be leaping out of water, represented by grass plants.

It is the centerpiece of the new-look roundabout in Reading Road by the entrance to Tesco and is meant to represent Henley as a gateway to a healthy lifestyle.

The woman?s body is made of galvanised, annealed steel and her hair is enamelled aluminium. The metal will change colour as it ages.

The £7,000 figure was the final piece of a design created by landscaper designer Paul Terroni to win a competition run by Henley in Bloom. The roundabout features five flower beds made from interlocking rings.

Miss Ducker, from Oxford, and Mr Terroni, from Abingdon, joined town council officials at the site as the figure was installed on Tuesday.

She said: ?I am thrilled with how it looks. I am really happy it is the first thing people will see when they come to Henley.

?People have been calling it ?Rachel?s roundabout? rather than the Tesco roundabout.?

Mr Terroni said: ?I am so pleased with the final result. It looks amazing.

?Now I can?t wait for the plants to grow so it looks like the sculpture is splashing out of water.? Kellie Hinton, chairwoman of Henley in Bloom, said: ?The sculpture is the perfect finishing touch. It is even more wonderful that I had imagined.

?Now we just need the grass at the bottom of the sculpture to grow to complete it. Clearly it will look better over time.

?It will be a great exhibition of art in Henley. I only hope that people don?t crash from looking at it as they drive past!?

The beds were planted up by Henley in Bloom?s Gardening Buddies.

Councillor Elizabeth Hodgkin, who organises the group of volunteers and was one of the competition judges, said: ?The roundabout has exceeded my expectations and Rachel is a genius in how she makes the movement feel real.?

An official unveiling of the roundabout, which is sponsored by the Henley Standard, will take place next month.

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