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The integrity of John Frankland’s 65-ton solid granite sculpture, Boulder 2 in Mabley Green has been severely compromised, both as an artwork and as a climbing boulder. This is the result of Hackney Council’s recent re-landscaping of this East London green space. Boulder 2 is one of two landmark public artworks that were commissioned by the acclaimed arts organisation PEER. The ‘sister’, Boulder 1 is sited in Shoreditch Park, and both were installed 2008.

John Frankland, as well as many members of the arts and climbing communities ask that you join them in their request for Hackney Council to remove the mounds of earth and planting that surround and abut Boulder 2.

Here are the reasons why we would like you to support our campaign.

  • Boulder 2 is an important public artwork that is much loved by the local community, but whose impact has been radically altered by the re-landscaping of Mabley Green.
  • Central to the artist’s intention for this artwork was that it placed in the center of Mabley Green, to be viewable from 360 degrees, like a megalith or standing stone.
  • Equally vital for the artist was that Boulder 2 should be climbed. It provides an important opportunity for the London climbing community to have access to an outdoor, natural rock, with 37 established ‘problems’ (climbing routes) that vary in difficulty and cater for a range of climbing abilities.
  • One side of Boulder 2 has been buried beneath 1.5 metres of earth, which has made approximately half of the routes unclimbable.
  • As a result of the re-landscaping, areas of Boulder 2 have now been identified by the Director of the Mile End Climbing Wall as a potential health and safety risk if climbed.
  • At the time of installation of both Boulder 1 and Boulder 2, a contract between Hackney Council and artist was agreed. It states that the boulders “… are site-specific works and it is integral to the Works that they are seen in a natural, unaltered environment. Hackney Council undertake to maintain the Works so that their integrity is not compromised."
  • The contract between artist and Hackney Council further states that, “Hackney Council agrees to adopt the Works as part of the infrastructure of the parks. … (and) assumes responsibility for the care and maintenance of the Works, … (and) will remediate and maintain the environment of the spaces around the Works”

This project was supported by and Deutsche Bank, Shoreditch Trust and The Henry Moore Foundation. To look at the film specially commissioned about this project follow this link.

For further information about the Mabley Green Boulder and other videos, follow these links.

Thank you for your support

John Frankland

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