Colourful swimming pool designed by Portuguese artist unveiled

An intricate swimming pool created by Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos has been unveiled in Edinburgh.

Swimmers will be able to visit the pool in August after the exhibition is officially opened on Saturday at the Jupiter Artland Foundation.

Edinburgh Art Festival 2019
The pool is as part of the 2019 Edinburgh Art Festival (Jane Barlow/PA)

The nine-metre pool, known as Gateway, was made from more than 11,500 hand-painted tiles using traditional methods at a 100-year-old factory in Vasconcelos’ native Portugal. It will be set within a landscaped garden in west Edinburgh.

The permanent exhibition is being unveiled as part of the Edinburgh Art Festival, running from July 27 to September 29.

Gateway is described as “an experiential space that is inherently social, playful and shared”, playing on the idea of swimming pools as “sites fostering community”.

Edinburgh Art Festival 2019
An aerial view of the artwork (Owen Humphreys/PA)

Soon to be open to the public, the work joins 34 other permanent collections set within in the grounds of Bonnington House, a 17th century Jacobean Manor House which is home to exhibitions commissioned by philanthropist art collectors Robert and Nicky Wilson.

Commenting on the new feature, the Foundation said: “Gateway is both intimate yet expansive, interweaving the dichotomies of publicness and privacy with the performance of bathing and art’s historical fixation with it.”

Other sculptures and installations across the grounds include works by artists including Antony Gormley, Charles Jencks, Anish Kapoor, Christian Boltanski, Nathan Coley, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Laura Ford, Anya Gallaccio, Andy Goldsworthy, Jim Lambie, Cornelia Parker and Marc Quinn.

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