Polar Sundial

Corner of Greenwich Church St and Stockwell St, SE10
So what’s all this about then? I must be the most monumentally unobservant phantom on the block as I only noticed this about a month ago (yes, ahem, I’m running a bit behind these days…) and only got round to taking a snap last week.

I’m assuming it’s council-fun. A large, shiny tube, cut off at an angle at the top with lots of information on it? Great. What’s it for? No idea. But hey – it’s shiny and it’s something fun to look at, so I’m happy…

As a piece of art it is, frankly, a bit clunky. Whereas most of the time I’m moaning that modern (and ancient) art in Greenwich doesn’t have enough information about it, so that even a few years after its creation it’s become unknown, this work has vast amounts of data on it. There’s a short history of the place, culminating in Greenwich’s acceptance into the World Heritage Site club ten years ago (which is presumably the reason this piece has suddenly appeared.) There are various charts and diagrams showing the stars and GMT. There’s a Polar Sundial cutting through the centre. There’s info about British Summer Time, sundials in general, solar time, the formula used to calculate corrections in time, and The Great Bear, among other things.

So – vast amounts of info, making it a bit worthy if you’re trying to view it as Art. But if you look at it as a funky information plaque, it’s fantastic. And an ideal place to arrange to meet people who are congenitally late – you’ll never get bored waiting for them…

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