Acclaimed artist creates Rugby's newest oval ball sculpture - The Rugby Observer
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14th Aug, 2022

Acclaimed artist creates Rugby's newest oval ball sculpture

Rugby Editorial 7th Oct, 2015 Updated: 27th Oct, 2016

A LANDMARK sculpture by a renowned artist has taken pride of place on the field where the game of rugby began.

Birth of the Egg Ball by Gavin Turk has been installed on Rugby School’s The Close, the school playing field where the game of rugby was invented in 1823 when William Webb Ellis caught the ball during a football match and ran with in.

The 6ft high work, cast in bronze treated to look like leather, weighs 700kg – and its egg shape is a signature of the artist.

Gavin Turk said: “The invention of the game of rugby by Webb Ellis was an act of creation and a breaking of the existing rules which, as an artist, I completely understand – it’s what I try to do every day.

“I hope people will look at this work and be inspired to their own creativity.”

Peter Green, headmaster of Rugby School, said: “Rugby teams and fans from all over the world over visit The Close and, in this special year for the game and our school, I’m sure they will be fascinated by Gavin’s evocative sculpture.”

He also thanked donors the Lawson-May family for funding the sculpture.

Neil Lawson-May, whose son was educated at Rugby School, said: “This is really a gift to the whole of the West Midlands and to visitors to Rugby.

“The School has very kindly agreed to host this brilliant piece and it will be open to the public at certain times for everyone to enjoy.”

A previous gift from the Lawson-May family enabled the School to acquire Jonathan Delafield Cook’s 11m-long life-size drawing of a sperm whale, which is mounted in the School’s Collingwood Centre.

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