Artist Craig Coulthard's 'Forest Pitch' to host just two games

A Scottish artist has secured nearly £500,000 in funding to create a football ground in a forest for just two games.

Craig Coulthard will fell trees to make way for a pitch as one of 12 art projects commissioned to celebrate the London 2012 Olympics.

The "Forest Pitch" is designed to provide a contrast to the new buildings created for the Olympics.

Coulthard was selected as the winner of the £460,000 lottery-funded commission for "Artists taking the lead" — part of the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

The pitch is due to be located in the Borders area but an exact site has not yet been determined.

The felled trees will be used to create a stand, goalposts and shelter that will act as both changing room and exhibition space.

The matches are open to spectators and once over the pitch will be left to return to nature, with the changing room left to document the project.

It is hoped the pitch will become a living relic of the Olympics, in contrast to the new buildings created in London for the Games.

Woodland partners will help in the construction of the project but they have yet to be announced.

The project was selected by a panel of judges from five projects shortlisted in August out of 98 Scottish entries.

There was a commission for each of the nine English regions, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Coulthard said:  "I am really proud to have been given the opportunity to complete this project; to be ale to bring an initial stage, and I'm looking forward to working with my team to create an exciting and worthy Scottish addition to the Cultural Olympiad."

Judge Neil Gillespie of Reiach and Hall Architects said:  "Craig Coulthard's proposition has a simple resonance for me, in contrast to the enormous logistical and infrastructural event that a modern Olympics inevitable becomes. A clearing in a forest in which a game of football is played out by amateurs is both appealing and provocative."

 

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