Carved owl

I came across this wooden owl sculpture in a public park in Scarborough, England, when I visited it with my mother in 2015.

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Graffiti vs. commissioned mural

To tell the truth, I prefer the graffiti. The sailor/fisherman was painted on the side of the building that houses the Ministry of Industries and Innovation and is, in my opinion, a muddy version of the stereotypical image of the rugged old fisherman holding the wooden steering wheel of his boat, except here, of course, he isn’t all that old. All that’s missing is the pipe, which isn’t surprising in this day and age. This imagery has been done before, and better.

The graffiti, on the other hand, has depth and can be interpreted in a number of ways, besides being pretty well executed.

Edit: I’ve found out more about the commissioned work. It is part of a project called Wall Poetry and is under the aegis of Iceland Airwaves, an annual music festival that takes place in Reykjavík in November, and Berlin’s Urban Nation. Artists and musicians were invited to collaborate on works of art, resulting in 10 new murals on various walls in and around central Reykjavík. The fisherman is a collaboration between Evoca 1 and musicians Saun and Starr, inspired by the song “Gonna Make Time” by the latter.

 

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A closer look at the fisherman:

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