Surround by Richard Nonas
This photo was taken on a Sunday afternoon after all the shops in the city had closed. Normally on a sunny summer day there will often be people using these stone chairs as seats. Unlike some of our other recent sculptures, these ones were made for it…!
Standing in the square in front of our Town Hall, still used as court house, this circle of stone chairs reminds of ancient meeting places for assemblies - ‘t(h)ings’ - discussing matters of importance, and keeping up law and order. Ancient circles of standing stones were traditionally believed to be used for gatherings such as these. Those were/are called “rings of judges”.
A 'thing' or 'ting' (Old Norse, Old English and Icelandic: þing; other modern Scandinavian languages: ting) was the governing assembly in Germanic and some Celtic societies, made up of the free people of the community and presided by lawspeakers, meeting in a place called a thingstead. One task for the ‘ting’ was to hear witnesses to rule whether the accused was guilty or not. Today the term still lives on in the official names of national legislatures and political and judicial institutions in the Nordic countries. (Wikipedia)
(I will be showing close-up photos of the fountain some other day.)