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Govan public realm enhancements planned

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March 21 2012

Govan public realm enhancements planned
A pictorial timeline of Govan’s history is to be created in the Glasgow district as part of the Central Govan Action Plan.

Designed by MAST Architects and based on original artwork by Kate Robinson the piece will form two large new public spaces at either end of a revamped pedestrian route - Langlands Path.

This will incorporate 10 distinct pieces along its route, from a gate at the Golspie Street end, intended to represent workers coming out of the shipyards, to a Cornucopia at Elderpark library – reflecting the roof of the library and swirling forms of the Clyde.

Between these anchor points a number of points of interest, such as the river, industry and buildings, will be flagged up via a series of toughened pictorial panels embedded in the street.

The path improvement works have been costed at £500k and will be financed by CGAP, Glasgowe City Council and Glasgow Housing Association.

A full list of artworks is noted below:

  • 1. Gate: Located at the Golspie Street end of Langlands Path, this represents workers coming out of the gates at the shipyards; a recurring theme that came up in community consultation. The workers spill out of the Gates and mingle with the people of Govan, a young couple with their child, a girl on a bicycle, an old man with a walking stick, an old woman with her shopping bags, a woman with her baby and child, the dog looking on, a man reading a paper stepping out of the circle of people into the street.
  • 2. River: An abstract representation of the river with fish and sail motifs cut out from the centre. The idea is to create a sense of flow and direction through use of rounded and more pointed shapes and to establish an elemental feel to the beginning of the timeline story, the water reaches back into the distant past as well as flowing into the future.
  • 3. Sarcophagus: A circular treatment of figures and shapes directly representing carvings from the stones at Govan Old parish Church, with particular reference to the St Constantine Sarcophagus. The central motif is an ancient motif of the union of spirit and matter.
  • 4. Weaving: Weaving was an important cottage industry in Govan before the advent of the Industrial Revolution. The idea behind the symbolism of this section is to visually unite the themes of water with the human inventions of knotwork and weaving. The final part of this section shows the beginning of a chain.
  • 5. Industry: The chain motif is picked up in the industry section which represents the coming of the Industrial Revolution to Govan. The motifs are the hull of a boat and a depiction of a shipping crane.
  • 6. Buildings: The rich architectural heritage of Govan is represented in this section. The Morris Pollock Silk Mill, Govan Old Parish Church, and sections from the Pearce Institute, Elderpark Library, St Anthony’s and the church at Govan Cross are shown in profile.
  • 7+8. Boats + Ships: Two panels are given to boats ranging from a small sailing boat to a steamer to a liner. The boats are represented on a thin line symbolising the river. Each boat is mirrored in the river with a reflection – although in fact the reflection points in the opposite direction – this is so that the boats will ‘read’ well for travellers  on the path from which ever direction they take.
  • 9. Cornucopia: this would be at the Elderpark Library end of Langlands Path. The images from this section are inspired by the roof of the Library and the swirling shapes of the river, which began the Timeline, have here become a cornucopia.
Govan has been subject to a frenzy of development in recent years
Govan has been subject to a frenzy of development in recent years
MAST hope to capture Govan's unique history for posterity
MAST hope to capture Govan's unique history for posterity

1 Comment

Marie McIntosh
#1 Posted by Marie McIntosh on 5 Feb 2017 at 19:11 PM
I have just come across your site, lots of interesting work already done. I lived in Nethan Street, for 10/11years. Could someone tell me where to find photos of my street. i.e. Demolition and first.plans. I'll pop on and off to keep myself up-to=date.

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