Peter Parkinson and Richard Quinnell
The first of the commissions in October 1999 under the Council's 'Percent for Art' policy was The Martlets Tree by artists Peter Parkinson and Richard Quinnell which celebrates the heraldic origin of 'The Martlets' (which features in the Towns Coat of Arms) with over a hundred tiny Martlet birds. Originally in Queens Square the Martlets Tree was moved to stand outside Crawley Library in 2016.
The 'Tree' features four key images:
This was closely followed by a Mosaic Mural work by Lewes based artist Marion Brandis in the Memorial Gardens.
The work provided a ceramic tile clad seat and adjoining planter. The theme of the work again depicts one of the main themes associated with the town, that of transport; George Coaching Inn, London to Brighton Veteran Car run and Gatwick Airport. The design also seeks to make reference to the theme of peace with illustrated doves of peace appropriate to the purpose and environment of Memorial Gardens.
The Golden Tree
The Golden Tree by Artist Joss Smith is around 13ft high and stands on the site of the town's old market cross.
The base is a York sandstone acorn cup to depict the Jurassic limestone under the area and the fact that Crawley was once forest. The middle section, a granite anvil shape, represents the long history of iron working in the area, while the huge polished bronze axe-head above is the same shape as several which have been found locally. The sculpture is topped by two crows to remind us that Crawley was originally called Crow Lea - a place of crows.
This was the final touch to Crawley's High Street improvements which was refurbished in 1999 in a £1.2 million joint scheme between Crawley Council and West Sussex County Council.
Jane Fordham and David Parfitt
Commissioned to mark the 60th anniversary of Crawley New Town and the town’s long association with HRH the Queen and Prince Philip the artwork is intended as a symbolic monument to the life of the town and its communities.
Individuals were encouraged to engage in the design process by providing their signatures which were used in decorative designs engraved into the nine boulders set within a landscaped enclave at the eastern side of the town centre.
Thousands contributed their signatures which were encased in time capsules inserted into the boulders alongside the signatures of the Queen and Prince Philip who signed the centrepiece stone when they last visited Crawley in November 2006.
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