Brighton’s newest ‘art installation’ is an unspeakable waste of money

(This item first appeared in the Brighton Argus on 8th September 2015)

Art is meant to provoke reactions. The latest Brighton art installation has neither inspired me or caused delight. It has been successful in provoking a reaction, one of incredulity that public funds can be wasted on such a nonsense.

Around London Road, stretching from the New England Quarter to Ditchling Road, is a circle of 48 paving slabs. Each one is numbered. When I first spotted them, I was curious. I had hoped they were sealed chambers that would hide the hideous junction boxes of a certain cable television and internet provider.

But no, they are an ‘art installation’. We are supposed to search them out, and (so I understand) there is a story behind each.

Some might describe me as a Philistine, but that would be unfair on Philistines who were a rather cultured lot. But I cannot see how these paving slabs, along with half a calf or an unmade bed, can be described as art.

What really bugs me is that on my walk into work each morning I go past a stretch of pavement that is uneven with broken paving slabs.

Yet not a stones throw away, someone has thought it fit to cut up a perfectly good, well-laid paving slab and replace it with one from this numbered nonsense. If there is enough money to spend digging up perfectly good paving slabs, please can something be done to repair the ones that pose a trip hazard.


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