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Iconic poppy sculpture Belfast-bound

Ulster Museum to display Weeping Window section from Tower of London installation

By Rebecca Black

Published 07/10/2016

The Weeping Window installation, which will be coming to the Ulster Museum next year
The Weeping Window installation, which will be coming to the Ulster Museum next year

A section of the famous poppy sculpture that stood at the Tower of London is to be exhibited in Belfast.

Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red marks 100 years since the first full day of Britain's involvement in the First World War.

Its 888,246 ceramic poppies - one to honour every death from the British and Colonial forces in the war - filled the tower's famous moat between July 17 and November 11, 2014.

Sections of the piece are touring the UK and one is set for Northern Ireland.

The Ulster Museum will present Weeping Window next year as part of cultural programme 14-18 NOW's UK-wide tour of the poppy sculpture.

It will feature from October 14 until December 3, 2017, after a proposal by National Museums Northern Ireland and Belfast International Arts Festival.

In 2014, to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War, the Ulster Museum opened a new, permanent modern history gallery.

The Decade of Centenaries period, from 1912 to 1922, is at the heart of the gallery, in recognition of the significance of this period in shaping the future, outlook and identities of what was to become Northern Ireland.

Kim Mawhinney, head of art at National Museums Northern Ireland, said the body was "delighted that this powerful and deeply moving sculpture will be coming to the Ulster Museum".

She added: "As well as enriching Northern Ireland's cultural and artistic landscape, this spectacular piece of art will also play a role in deepening our understanding of the First World War and sense of shared history during this pivotal period.

"The Weeping Window will be a very special addition to our extensive Decade of Centenaries 1912-22 programme."

Richard Wakely, director of the Belfast International Arts Festival, said: "With less than a week until the start of the 2016 Festival, we are delighted and honoured to have confirmation that we will co-host Poppies: Weeping Window, which will be a cornerstone of next year's Belfast International Arts Festival programme."

Jenny Waldman, director of 14-18 NOW, said the poppies had captivated millions of people across the UK.

"We are delighted to take them to Northern Ireland for the first time in 2017, where Weeping Window will be presented at the Ulster Museum, in partnership with the Belfast International Arts Festival," she added.

Weeping Window makes up just one section of the complete artwork.

Other destinations for the sculpture include Cardiff and Derby.

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