Project Name: This Scepter’d Isle

Location: Spirit of Discovery

Date Completed: June 2019

Designer: Alun Roberts/SMC Art

Triple-height bronze relief atrium artwork, representing British landscape and British achievements. Commissioned by Saga Cruises to act as the focal point of their first new build vessel. SMC Art collaborated with SAGA Cruises to create a story that carries through the whole on board art collection. The Atrium artwork is the culmination of this story.

The process took around four years, beginning with sketching the initial design and story, and exploring multiple samples and finishes, ensuring the selected material passed the required IMO certifications. Next came finalising technical details and drawings with the shipyard – the piece is approx. 12m in height and 5m in width, and curved, rather than flat, so this needed to be very carefully planned. The piece was then created by forming intricate sheet moulds, with the many layers and textures of the design drawn digitally. These were then hand cast and hand polished to catch the light which plays across the surface throughout the day, bringing the textures and image to life. Finally, the piece, made up of 35 panels, was installed.

Visual motifs tell a clear story. The scale and location, offering views over three decks, allows viewers to take in every individual element. The artwork design takes us on a journey through the British Isles. Recognisable elements, both natural, and British-made are included, from the white cliffs of Dover to the Angel of the North, from Giles Gilbert Scott’s red telephone box to the Forth Bridge: all inviting the passenger to look closer, discovering more and more on each viewing.  It is a celebration of everything our Scepter’d Isles have to offer.