Thursday, June 26, 2008

Berlin Bears and Liverpool Lambananas

A different take on the craze that is sweeping Liverpool perhaps?

Here we have a "tail" of two cities (oh the puns she comes up bears have tails? Lambs certainly do.)

In Berlin when Lisa and I visited, they were exhibiting bears - the symbol of Berlin - which had been decorated to represent countries across the world. We came across about half a dozen scattered across the city and a further 50 or so, all gathered together in a herd, or a pack, or a growl, or whatever is the appropriate term for a group of bears.

And in Liverpool for the last week or so, a similar grouping of lambananas have been gracing the city streets, each decorated by different groups of residents, artists, local businesses, the public and the private sector. (I am calling them lambananas rather than superlambananas because I think only the original is "super", surely these smaller versions are merely lambananas?)

They have a lot in common, and they share a lot of characteristics.

I would be interested in your thoughts on the comparison and in the fantastic efforts that people in both countries have gone to.

Let's begin with a Berlin bear that Lisa and I met about 5 feet away from the line from the former Berlin wall.

He is a really European Bear as you can see.

Then let's have a look at one of the Liverpool Lambananas.

I shall start with my favourite. Painted by Kensington children, and representing the five fruit and veg we should all eat each day. This lambanana is currently displayed in the Walker Art Gallery - and that has got to be the TOP location that any budding artist could possibly wish for!

Indeed the poster on the wall next to the lambanana makes this very point. The photo shows the children painting the sculpture but misses out the section where one of them explains how "made up" she was to learn that their wonderful art work would be displayed in such a fantastic place. I take my hat off to them all for a fantastic piece of art.

If you are paying attention and if you click on the photo and blow it up to its full extent you will see a strawberry, broccoli spears, an orange, a banana and what is on the top? A melon perhaps?

Let's go back to the bears. Lisa and I had a clear favourite, the Iraq bear with the magic flying carpet carrying children across a mystical world.

The next Lambanana I want to feature stands proudly outside Allerton library, where I visit every three weeks to get my next book fix.

It features a map of the local Wavertree/Wavertree/Chruch area, sadly my road is missing but Colin's road runs across the face of the lamb - how cool is that!

The next photo shows a whole host of Berlin Bears, reaching to the heavens, from all over the world, are they not simply glorious? They are currently gathered next to the museum of Berlin in a courtyard where we had our lunch. Great dining companions they were too.

Of course I could not forget Kensington and Fairfield's own Lambananas in this gallery.

Have you met Kenny? He is standing on Kensington, at the junction with Hall Lane, and seen by many thousands of motorists and pedestrians every single day which is why Liam, Wendy and I picked this site for him. He is adorned with hand-drawn picture of mythical animals (as he himself is a mythical animal) drawn by local Kensington children under the tutelage of Kensington resident Barbara with the support of METAL.

Compare him with the Berlin Bear from Cuba who is a cheeky little chap and really took our fancy.

There is also a Lambanana in Newsham Park which has excited local people no end. The staff in the Adult Learning Centre are so thrilled that their sculpture has been attracting tourists on the culture trail. Never before, or at least for many years, has there been any reason for tourists to visit our park and everyone is truly delighted.

This sculpture is adorned with flowers, at the heart of each being a photo of a different local person.

I am sure that one of my readers will also want to recall the cows in Manchester, this temporary artworks and sculptures are a great way of enhancing a city's art and culture offering.

Enjoy - if you click on a photo it will present itself in a much bigger form, feel free to save them and use them, but if you use them on the web, please give this site some credit. Thanks.

1 comment:

scouseboy said...

Why not investigate if the council could swap one or two lamb bananas for a similar number of berlin Bears?