ArcelorMittal Orbit

First impressions count. Or do they? My first glance at the ArcelorMittal Orbit didn’t elicit a favourable response. If I remember correctly, my thought ran along the lines of WTF. It’s a monstrosity. I hadn’t been overly impressed with some of the logos and designs (more on those another day) of the London Olympics. And this was the final straw.

But some things are an acquired taste. I’m beginning to wonder if I am acquiring a taste for this giant red tower of mecchano. I’ve stopped looking at it as an icon, and started looking at it as art. It is art, Apparently. In it’s favour, it is a piece of art that doesn’t have that Henri Matisse-esque ‘I could do that’ feeling about it. It also has a slightly edgy, modern sense of Mexican design.

I do like things to be different. To be unique, even. To push boundaries. The Orbit does all that. I suspect that once the Olympic Park area as a whole is finished off, and on a sunny blue sky day, this tower is going to look a whole load more impressive. But most of all, I really, really want to get up it to that viewing platform. I’ll queue, happily. The views will be great. I hope they don’t get too greedy with the pricing though.

I’ve created a gallery of photos on Flickr that you can see by clicking here. And there’s a video of one of the creators of the Orbit below. What do you think? Collosal carbuncle? Or towering titan? Or perhaps still undecided?

10 thoughts on “ArcelorMittal Orbit

  1. Odd. WordPress is now asking me to sign it through its services. I couldn’t comment yesterday. Such is the changing nature of the computer world.

    And it is the nature of change I wanted to discuss yesterday. I really like the piece. Because it is edgy. It has the same feel that a lot of modern outdoor Mexican art pieces have.

    But that is the challenge. Most edgy pieces do not age well. There are exceptions, of course. Like the Eiffel Tower. We will see in two or three years if it is edgy art or merely anachronistic.

    Today, though, I would give it a solid B+.

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    1. I got your email and was about to make your comment for you, but you beat me to it – sorry for whatever the problem was!

      You were more certain in your email about it’s aesthetic longevity. You called it tomorrow’s giant outdoor Lava lamp. I had to respond to that…

      I don’t know how well you know that part of London. But, despite the regeneration and gentrification, it’s still amongst the seedier parts of London. I can see the area being filled with hoodies on their skateboards roaming wild, with every spare surface covered in graffiti. Perhaps then a rusting, tatty industrial looking monument will look perfectly in keeping!*

      As for Lava lamps, there’s nothing wrong with them! I was most disappointed to find my own lamp had been thrown out some years earlier when I returned from Mexico. But I have to stick up for Lava lamps. They were created by a local and are still made just down the road from me in Poole.

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  2. Gary, how dare you post the x-ray of my gut – after a pollo asado at Papgayo’s!!! I guess beauty IS in the eye of the beholder, or that of a blind local council!!
    Yech!
    Dan in NC

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