ART AND ENGINEERING, AT FALKIRK

This is at Falkirk, Fife, in Scotland, continuing with my last year’s trip to that region.

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These magnificent structures are called Kelpies. In local Scottish mythology  Kelpies are aquatic spirits that can alter their appearance. They are said to haunt rivers and would often be seen in the shape of a horse.

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These amazing 30 meters high sculptures, composed of steel plates attached to underlying supporting structures, are situated at a new extension to the Forth and Clyde Canal, in the Helix a Parkland Project connecting 16 communities in the Falkirk Council Area. Lottery funding was granted for the sculptures.  They were designed by Scottish Sculptor Andy Scott and they are truly awsome!

The scale and complexity of this project required the  involvement of consultant and structural engineers and steelwork contractors to finally build these huge and perfectly formed heads, which can be seen from a wide surrounding area.

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Very nearby is the Falkirk Wheel, another wonderful invention and awe-inspiring engineering achievement which attracts hordes of visitors.  There is of course a visitors centre with a cafe and one can sit in comfort and watch the wheel working through the glass front of the building.

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The purpose of this wheel – the only one of its kind in the world, is to lift boats from one canal level to another.  It is a rotating boat lift connecting the Forth and Clyde Canal with the Union Canal.  It reconnects the two canals for the first time since the 1930s (when several time consuming locks were involved) and opened in 2002.

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The design of the wheel was primarily by the Architect Tony Kettle, who worked with a team of others on the project.

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In this photo above, there are boats in both the top and bottom pans –  or gondolas – as they are called.

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The wheel raises and drops boats by 24 metres (79 ft). The gondolas, in which the boats are sitting, each contain as much water as an olympic swimming pool.

Below I have inserted two videos, one of Andy Scott talking about the Kelpies and the other is describing the working of the Falkirk wheel.

 

Thanks for visiting my post. I hope you enjoyed it.  Do visit my website:

https://www.helene-brennan.com/c867-photos-of-scotland?

BERLIN 4, Some More of the Arty, Creative and Unusual.

 

Berlin is awash with all sorts of creativity. These photos show just a few of the images I captured in my opportunist moments as a tourist. I have little or no information about some of them, but they caught my attention.

Below is a sculptural installation Rolling Horse on the northern terrace of  the amazing Central Station.  It  was designed by the German sculptor Jürgen Goertz.

 

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The Oberbaum Bridge, above. It’s a double deck bridge that links Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg, boroughs that were divided by the Berlin Wall, and it has become an important symbol of Berlin’s unity. The photo below shows a train passing over the bridge. It’s 124 meters long. I have read that the design of the bridge has been credited to Santiago Calatrava and opened in 1896.  But Santiago Calatrava wasn’t born until 1951 – so I’m confused about that!

 

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Above and below are two examples of several murals along Schloss Strasse, depicting events of history  – on the way up to Charlottenburg Palace.

 

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Below, the top of the Brandenburg Gate, as a more modern type of air transport passes above.

 

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I couldn’t let this colourful car pass without grabbing a shot. As for the one below – more fun than art, but I had to capture it.  Several of them passed by, with grown up drivers.

 

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Below are photos of chance discoveries as I explored the city.

 

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Music by the River Spree, above.

 

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Graffiti,  by the River Spree. There is a lot of graffiti in Berlin, some of it interesting and artful, but much of it is defacing other art objects, as in other examples shown in this post, above and below.

 

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This one above and one below are examples of murals on the old Berlin Wall, or “The East Side Gallery”, as I have described in my first Berlin post.

 

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This one above appeared to be inviting people to make their own mark.

 

 

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Bubbles in Berlin, above; a little fun by the Brandenburg Gate.

 

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I really wanted to go up in this balloon, which would have given wonderful views of the city, but after queuing up for some time I was to be disappointed – out of service for some reason!

I have several more photos, this is just a small section of them. I hope you have enjoyed looking at them.

Please visit my website. http://www.helene-brennan.com/c860-germany