A great installation for glass blower


By Rachel Baird

For installation in Princes Street Gardens.


The sculpture will consist of a cylinder of igneous granite [1] approximately 1 m diameter and 75cm high – the size of a small well: the outer well of granite is the well of hope which contains the inner well of light—the potential future of humanity and a world without war. The outer edge of the granite will be hewn from a solid mass of unpolished granite – with outer side layers rounded but unpolished and containing a smooth lipped edge at the top; the top is to be flat and highly polished. The cylinder will be hollowed out with an inside ledge 1/3rd of the depth of the inner cylinder of the light well upon which will be placed a disc of hand blown iridescent multi-rainbow glass. The glass disc will be covered and protected with a disc cap stone of clear acrylic glass (Perspex) at the top edge of the light well to protect the colored glass from physical damage. There will be a circular mirror at the inner base of the sculpture and mirrors at the base of the inside cylinder walls to reflect light back up through the glass disc and illuminate it. Quartz and Amethyst chips will be applied in a circle directly above the mirrored surface for additional reflective surface. The granite in the inner cylinder (the light well) will be highly polished and, as the granite will naturally contain flecks of quartz and mica, there will be a reflective and iridescence to the granite as well.

The permanent location for this sculpture will be at West end of Princes St Gardens, on the grass verge approximately 30 yards from the gate leading from the Gardens in to St Cuthbert’s Church yard.

The size of the sculpture is to be of a circumference of approximately 1 metre with a circular paved path to accommodate wheel chair access around it.

The sculpture will be at table height (75 cm) so children and people in wheelchairs could peer into the center to see “The Bigger Picture”- what is possible if you have the eyes to see it.

The title plaque could be attached to one of the outer sides of the granite, or the wording might be carved in a prepared section of the outer side. Wording: “In recognition of conscientious objectors all who oppose wars.”

Ideally this sculpture would have two – or more – directional paths leading to a circular pathway (wheelchair accessible, possibly built of hard core with gravel on top?) for access to the sculpture. But, given the location one path leading in would be sufficient. The foundation that the sculpture is set upon will also be made of this material and will have a very slight slope to accommodate drainage away from the sculpture.

The outer granite form of the well holds the inner light well—the future potential of humanity.

The circle form – representing the consideration for all humanity and the whole planet in the decisions we make.

The rough stone – in the unpolished state – to represent the strength it takes to go against the tide and conscientiously object to war.

The layer of smoothed stone circle on top edge – represents moving deeper inward into our thoughts, feelings and consciousness – considering the whole.

The multi-colored blown glass (with iridescent prism) – Represents humanity’s potential – what is possible. What if we collectively took all the resources and energy of war and transmuted it to the greater good of our planet?

[1] Granite to be sourced if possible from Dyce quarry where Conscientious objectors were imprisoned in camp and where first CO died in custody. Alternatively from Aberdeenshire or another Scottish Quarry location).

Formal conceptual sketches and paintings obtained by emailing Liz Cull on