23 February 2011

Footbridge over Citylink, Brunswick West, VIC, Australia

One day, I headed out for a little stroll around some of the quieter suburban streets north of Albion Street. It was a bit of a dark day, with dark clouds threatening rain on the horizon. Everything was very still, and to be honest I was getting a little unnerved by it all. Imagine how I felt, then, when I followed a grassy little path and came out facing this.


This creepy creepy bridge runs from Peacock Street to McColl Street over Citylink. There is another bridge a little further south that is the same as the Head Bridge in every way except one. The crucial difference is that the Hope Street bridge doesn't have these CREEPY FUCKING HEADS. I inspected the bridge thoroughly and found absolutely no explanation for these heads. No artist name, no commemorative plaque, nothing. Just a whole lot of unnerving stone heads. They seems to all come from the same mould, so it's not like they're supposed to be statues of real people. Then again, I suppose this is for the best - I don't know about you, but I certainly wouldn't want to be immortalised in cracked stone on the walls of a slightly claustrophobic footbridge. This is a fate which I would only wish upon people like Tony Abbott and Justin Bieber, to name but two.

Now, I'm all for a little bit of artwork to liven up the city. I was frequently frustrated with the lack of artwork (or just nice features in general) in Auckland. However, I do not want to be confronted by cracked, blackened, expressionless stone heads when I'm going for an innocent suburban walk. These remind me forcibly of the way that hunters (and my friend Jamie) display deers' heads and the like over their fireplaces. Some of the heads look as though they've been burnt, and others have missing pieces - there's one which lacks a nose. Some of the heads have been defaced as well, which in most cases just adds to the eeriness. The drips of spraypaint on some of the heads make them look as though they're crying (or just emo kids without waterproof mascara).

I've searched far and wide for an explanation of this and have so far found nothing. Still, an explanation wouldn't stop this thing being creepy. I feel sorry for all the poor children who have probably been given nightmares from walking across this bridge. Actually that's a lie; I hate children. Still, this thing creeped the shit out of me, and I had to drag Ax down there as soon as possible to make him believe that I'd actually found such a thing. We went in the late evening, as most of these photos show, and it was even creepier that way. I guess this is what I get for walking down rape-y pathways by myself on dull days. Still, if it wasn't for insatiable curiosity, this blog wouldn't exist in the first place, and what a terrible thing that would be!

Rating: Unpleasant, both in design and in the feeling it gives you.

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