Page last updated at 15:43 GMT, Tuesday, 2 February 2010
Never mind the bollards - it's public art in Cardiff
Looking inside the bollards

When is a bollard not a bollard? When it's a piece of public art, of course!

Next time you're in Cardiff city centre you may spy people peering intently into metal bollards dotted around the Hayes and St David's shopping centre.

They're looking at Post Secrets by Jane Edden. Monochrome figurines can be seen inside the metal bollards by looking through a small peep hole.

It was commissioned by the Safle consultancy and St David's partnership as part of a £1.5m public art project.

The brief was to create artworks that would fit in with the surroundings and wouldn't clutter the space.

As one of the artists selected, Jane Edden wanted her piece to be something subtle and secret that people could only find out about if they knew what to look for.

'Post Secrets' by Jane Edden

Her idea came from seeing metal bollards around the new shopping centre and finding that they were hollow inside.

She describes Post Secrets as being "more like design and problem solving than fine art."

Eleven bollards around the Hayes and St David's shopping centre carry stickers encouraging people to look at the artwork inside.

Jane sketched and photographed students from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

These sketches formed the basis for the laser cut figures in various scenes inside the bollards.

"I wanted them to be the starting point for people making up their own stories about what those people are up to," says Jane.

"The viewer can make something up about what's going on."

She deliberately made the figures black and white as she wanted a contrast from the vibrancy and hustle and bustle inside the shopping centre.

"I wanted them to be little moments of calm so that when people do bend down and look inside they completely enter another world."

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