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Statue of artist set to replace UVF mural in Belfast

By Cate McCurry

Published 24/09/2015

The tribute to William
Conor
The tribute to William Conor

A life-size bronze statue of a Belfast artist set to replace a UVF mural will be unveiled this week.

As part of a re-imaging project, the 1.9 metre-high figure of William Conor has been erected in the spot of the painting.

The area, now dubbed Conor's Corner, is part of a bid to establish a cultural corridor for one of Belfast's popular tourist areas.

The statue, made by the German sculptor Holger Lonze, sits at the corner of Northumberland Street and the Shankill Road, close to the Old Lodge area where the artist grew up.

Conor was known as the people's painter because of how he captured ordinary street scenes.

Paul Ferguson, a community development officer for the West Belfast Athletic and Cultural Society, said: "Part of our work is to remove murals, and we were thinking of trying something different."

"While William Conor is known around the world, he is not really known in our area, so we wanted to do something about that.

"When we put out a call for artists to create the sculpture, people from across the world replied to us.

"Tourists who come to the area see murals of paramilitaries, but we are trying to do something different and to acknowledge the artistic heritage in the area."

The statue will be unveiled at noon on Saturday.

Belfast Telegraph

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