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Liverpool Plinth puts plastic pollution centre stage

The latest statue to grace the Liverpool Plinth has been unveiled – and it aims to highlight the plastic pollution swamping our waters.

Tidal Shame, by Yorkshire-based artist Gail Dooley, features a ceramic gannet perched on top of a tangled pile of sea plastic and debris.

The statue is the third to win a place on the plinth, which stands in the grounds of St Nicholas Church, after Tony Heaton’s Gold Lamé and Split Decision by Sam Shendi.

Much of the plastic used in the base was collected locally by residents during lockdown.

Dooley, whose art explores ideas of animal conservation, said: “The ceramic bird depicted in Tidal Shame is a gannet trapped by authentic sea plastic and detritus collected on UK shores, including along Merseyside’s coastline, during lockdown.

“The sculpture is my response to the shocking levels of global marine pollution.”

Top: Gail Dooley with Tidal Shame on the Liverpool Plinth

Above: The ceramic gannet on top of a pile of plastic debris

The Liverpool Plinth is a collaboration between Liverpool Parish Church, Liverpool BID and dot-art.

Artists from across the North of England were invited to submit works in a competition to find a new piece of sculpture to stand on the site for the next 12 months.

Tidal Shame was chosen by a judging panel which included dot-art director Lucy Byrne, Crispin Pailing, Rector of Liverpool, and Fatoş Üstek, director of Liverpool Biennial.

Lucy Byrne said: “It’s a work that reminds us of the continued global challenge around climate change and how it impacts the wildlife around us.

“I’m grateful to our partners who have continued to support us at this difficult time and to be able to champion public art reminds us of our shared spaces that belong to us all”.

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