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Forgotten floating head sculpture back on display after 33 years

It was created for the Glasgow Garden Festival in 1988

A sculpture of a giant floating head which languished forgotten for decades has gone back on public display after it was rediscovered and restored.

Richard Groom created the 27-tonne concrete and steel artwork for the Glasgow Garden Festival, which took place in 1988.

After the event, it was left abandoned on the banks of the Clyde and was at risk of being destroyed until it was found and moved to Rothesay Dock East on the north bank of the river, where it was then largely forgotten.

However, following Groom’s death in 2019, the artist’s family and friends set out to track down the sculpture and restore and conserve it.

The giant head, which was created with the help of out-of-work shipbuilders, has now been floated back up the river and will be moored in the Canting Basin near the Glasgow Science Centre until October 6, also featuring in Glasgow Doors Open Day in mid-September.

Andy Groom, the artist’s brother, said: “Myself and my family were so touched at Richard’s funeral where so many of his friends and colleagues commented on all of his work, especially the floating head.

“It became apparent very quickly we had to find it, fix it, float it. We couldn’t believe our luck when we found and met with Offshore Workboats, who had rescued it.

“We then tracked down and met Ian Henderson, the owner of the head, who has allowed us the opportunity to display the head again for the public to see.

“We’re really grateful to all of them, and everyone else, who has made it possible for us to have the sculpture restored and returned to the heart of Glasgow.”

Published: by Radio NewsHub