Huge inflatable psychedelic Argonaut takes up residence on lake at Walsall Arboretum

A huge inflatable psychedelic Argonaut has taken up residence on the lake in Walsall Arboretum Park.

A huge inflatable argonaut has been installed in Walsall Arboretum lake
A huge inflatable argonaut has been installed in Walsall Arboretum lake

The £10,000 Walsall Water Argonaut, which is 21 feet high, was co-designed by artist Jason Wilsher-Mills and local disabled people as a celebration of disability in the Black Country.

Visitors can point their phone at it and it will immediately display personalised pictures and information.

The sculpture has been placed inside a life buoy, which is adorned with artwork created by disabled groups, both in the region and beyond.

To design the piece Jason, who has a disability himself, worked with over 60 other disabled individuals to complete the floating sculpture.

He said: “I want people to smile when they first see him, and then I want them to stop and think. He is what I call a ’Trojan horse’; in the sense that the viewer simply thinks it is a bit of colourful fun, but then they see those beautiful disabled faces which adorn the surface, and I hope this will make them think about some of the issues relating to the work."

The project is supported by Arts Council England and in collaboration with Walsall Council Healthy Spaces, Creative Black Country, The Canal & River Trust, The New Art Gallery Walsall and Birmingham Festival 2022.

The Walsall Water Argonaut will be on the lake in Walsall Arboretum Park until August 22 and Walsall Canal Basin from August 23 until September 2.

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