London’s latest landmark created by former Bedford Modern School pupil

A Bullet From a Shooting Star by Sculptor Alex Chinneck, former Bedford Modern School pupil PNL-150922-144837001

A Bullet From a Shooting Star by Sculptor Alex Chinneck, former Bedford Modern School pupil PNL-150922-144837001

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An upside-down electricity pylon, which seems to defy gravity, has been created by a former Bedford Modern School pupil.

Now a world-famous artist, Alex Chinneck, unveiled his latest creation - A Bullet from a Shooting Star - in Greenwich, London, last week.

Sculptor Alex Chinneck, former Bedford Modern School pupil PNL-150922-145723001

Sculptor Alex Chinneck, former Bedford Modern School pupil PNL-150922-145723001

The 35-metre high structure was created for the London Design Festival Landmark Project. It pierces ground to the west of The O2, which is currently being developed for 15,000 new homes.

During the day, the sculpture casts a maze of shadows across the surrounding roads and footpaths.

At night it is lit up, visible from Greenwich , Canary Wharf and beyond.

Alex, 30, said: “Greenwich is the centre of world time, and I’m interested in the idea that the sculpture intersects the prime meridian line, acting as a giant sundial.

“While we hope it will be a cultural and sculptural beacon, you can’t just make a landmark.

“But with its height and illumination, we have given it our best shot.”

As a school boy, Alex did not plan to become an artist.

He said: “I had a fantastic art teacher at Bedford Modern School, who somehow recognised some artistic talent and nurtured it. He helped me take my initial steps in sculpture.

He added: “Art doesn’t run in my family. I was always interested in sport, as my dad taught sport at Bedford Modern.

“It was my art teacher who encouraged me to go to art college.”

Alex is best known for creating temporary public artworks, which create impossible visual illusions.

His previous works include a building which appeared to float in Covent Garden, a house which appeared as if the front was sliding down in its garden,in Margate, and a car suspended from a curve of tarmac, in the Southbank Centre.

A Bullet from a Shooting Star contains 15 tons of steel set in foundations including 25m deep piles within 120 tonnes of concrete.

The work was inspired by industrial history of the site, which once included the largest oil and gas works in Europe and a steelworks.

Alex hopes it will be on the site for years to come, before being moved to a new home.

For more information, go to www.alexchinneck.com