Michael Furrell – Flywheel
‘Flywheel’ by Michael Farrell was part of the ‘On the Town’ Midland View 4 Sculpture Show which was held in Coventry from 12th September – 31st October 1987. It was created in situ in ‘Speakers Corner’ opposite the Council House in Earl Street. One of our committee members recalls watching the sculptor create the work with a hammer and chisel from a large block of stone, watched by dozens of Council employees on their lunch break. After the exhibition the sculpture was retained in the same location.
The sculpture has the appearance of a spinning wheel running against a current of water or waves. Marks in the stone give the appearance of movement. Although it’s an abstract form, it has the appearance of a shell or fossil but at the same time it has a turbine or flywheel feel about it.
Michael Farrell was born in Paisley in 1964 and was educated at St. Helen’s College of Art and Design, Birmingham Polytechnic, obtaining a BA in Fine Art.
The sculpture stayed in ‘Speaker’s Corner’ for 26 years but it never looked right in this location. It was not large and only stood a bit higher than the wall behind it. It was between benches and under trees and the sap from the trees would fall on it making the piece look dirty and unloved. The area was very popular for political speeches and demonstrations, but not many people noticed it. In 2015 the City Council re-modelled the landscaped area in front of the Council House and the opportunity was taken to relocate the sculpture.
Speaker’s Corner during the reconstruction. The wall and treeshave been bulldozed after the sculpture and benches were taken away.
The cleaned sculpture in its new and more prominant location at the other end of the lawn in front of the new Council Offices.