Apollo by Steve Messam | Art

Steve Messam: “I mean it’s, it’s big
and its orange, what more do you need to know? (laughing)
I wanted to do something that didn’t dominate what The Pavilion does, and The Pavilion as
an artwork is still kind of the centerpiece of the whole thing.
So, I wanted something that, kind of, got people to look at the original artwork in,
in a new way. So to kind of, bring out some of those new details and make it a different
kind of experience, and some people look at it freshly, and look at it in a way that maybe
they have not looked at it before, particularly local people who are seeing it every day and
you want to do something that is a huge difference in a transformative way, but over a short
amount of time. It’s that kind of that big hit, a once upon
a time a never again, it’s a once upon a time something amazing happened here, and
this piece is completely transformed but just for four days and then it has gone.
There’s no kind of concept! It is art and so, you, it’s just in the same manner that
the original piece was done, without purpose, without meaning, without function, this is
a piece that extends that concept of art, that art has no function….
And as Blake said that the purpose of art is, is to deepen the mystery, and that is,
kind of, what it is, so you don’t want people to understand it.”
Cllr Simon Henig: “This is part of Durham 19 Year of Culture but, of course, it is also
the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo Pavilion, itself named to commemorate the first landing
on the Moon in 1969. I think we have now had a number of years
of investing in events, arts, culture across County Durham and we have seen the benefits
in terms of the number of visitors that it brings in that’s a boost to the economy,
but in terms of a sense of pride as well in County Durham, and the benefits that flow
from people getting involved in events like this. Seeing things in a new light, looking
at building that they know in a different way, I think all of these reasons are positives
for investing in arts and culture. I think it is realty important that we have
events across County Durham, and so it is important to be in Peterlee as anywhere else
in County Durham, and it is great that this is the second event that we have had here
celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo Pavilion. But, for example, earlier
on in the year we launched the Seaham Food Festival. There was a food festival in Bishop
Auckland. Clearly, we’ve got events like Lumiere in
Durham, but there are events right across County Durham, and it is really important
that this is something that everybody, across the County, can be part of.
It’s always an aim to interact with local people and that certainly happened when we
had the Lumiere style installation a few months ago, when we had literally thousands of people
coming and interacting with that particular artwork, and we very much hope that people
will come out again to have a look at this, and enjoy it over the next few nights.”

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