SkyWatch & CDP Theme Day: Changes

HAPPY NEW YEAR! “Changes” was not an easy theme to come up with for City Daily Photo’s Theme Day today. Change is very slow to come here in Saudi Arabia and in the two years I have been here, most of the change that I have witnessed is in the form of frenzied construction which I have featured on this blog several times.
This public art monument is called Al-Saroukh I and was created by the Egyptian artist Salah Abdulkarim. He submitted two designs to honor the benefits and strength of iron to Jeddah’s Mayor Al-Farsi, and the mayor could not reach a decision between the two, so both pieces were commissioned and constructed. Both sculptures are made of steel and trace its many uses throughout the years from things like swords to mechanical machinery to spacecraft.
So how does all this relate to “changes?” Well, many of Jeddah’s sculptures are located in the middle of major intersections on huge roundabouts. As the city has grown and traffic has increased, the roundabouts have proven to be very unsafe and the cause of many accidents. Consequently there are plans to replace the roundabouts with regular intersections. This sculpture was actually one of the first to be relocated to a new home on a boulevard divider from its original place in the middle of the roundabout. The roundabout where it once stood is now gone. Hopefully this will improve traffic flow and reduce accidents.
I’d like to wish you Peace and Blessings on this New Years Day and to thank you for visiting my blog throughout this past year.
To fly MORE friendly skies around the world, visit SKYWATCH.

City Daily Photo is an online group of over 500 photo bloggers who share their cities with the world. The first of each month is a theme day that members can participate in.
Click here to view thumbnails for all participants

About SusieOfArabia

American woman now living in hubby's homeland of Saudi Arabia
This entry was posted in Art, Landmarks, Middle East, Photo, Saudi Arabia, Sculptures and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

43 Responses to SkyWatch & CDP Theme Day: Changes

  1. carolynUSA says:

    Interesting as it seems more and more round abouts are appearing in the United States. What a magnificent sculpture and sky in this photo!

  2. Bridget says:

    Moving away from roundabouts? Fascinating as here in the States, much of the common wisdom is that roundabouts are safer. We’ve seen an explosion of roundabouts here in Colorado in the last 10 years and I have to say that I like them.

    • In smaller cities and towns and out in the country, I think roundabouts are great. But in a city the size of Jeddah, with the population approaching 4 million, crazy drivers who do not follow basic rules of the road much less extend courtesies to other drivers, roundabouts have proven to be extremely dangerous. When you have four lanes of traffic merging into four lanes on a roundabout, it just doesn’t work and it’s always a harrowing experience.

  3. SandyCarlson says:

    That’s an interesting sculpture. I like it. Thanks for the insight into why it was moved.

  4. great choice for theme day but what a lot of work to relocate the major works of art and create an intersection from a roundabout. Happy New Year and I wish you many good photos in 2010!

  5. zyzzyz says:

    It looks like a huge screwdriver!

  6. Judy says:

    This is an interesting sculpture. I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like it. While the change there is to take out the roundabouts, the change here is to put them in. We have two new ones and one on the way. I don’t like them and have no idea why they chose to put them in. Great post for the theme day, Susie.

  7. slim says:

    Studies have been done on roundabouts, or rotaries as we call them in the states, and the conclusions are that they are a bad choice for traffic flow. Perhaps a sculpture park would bring all this wonderful art together in a public open space to be enjoyed by all at an unhurried pace. Best wishes for 2010!

    • There are actually two areas where many, but not all, of the sculptures are in the city. Along the Corniche, which is the area that runs along the Red Sea for miles and miles, there are quite a few of the sculptures all along there. And then there is another area called Alhamra Open Air Art Museum which also contains many sculptures. But unfortunately I wouldn’t call either one of them “parks” – at least not like the parks that I am familiar with in America that have trees and grass and park benches and picnic tables. Then there are other sculptures dotting the city in random places as well.

  8. Geogypsy says:

    Another cool public sculpture. I wonder if you can walk up those stairs?

  9. Tara R. says:

    Interesting sculpture. It must have been very difficult to move once it had been placed in the roundabout.

  10. Maia says:

    This is a wonderful sky photo and the sculpture is interesting too.
    Wishing you much happiness and prosperity in the New Year!

  11. Rozy says:

    happy 2010 Susie!!! take many many more nice shots of Jeddah pls!!!

    from your fan in singapore

  12. Awesome sculpture !!!

  13. Steffi says:

    Great photo!
    I wish you and your family a Happy New Year 2010!

  14. Evelyn says:

    What an amazing structure. Happy New Year.

  15. ladyfi says:

    An amazing sculpture!

    I wish you joy and well being this year!

  16. Chiara says:

    Although change may come slow to Saudi Arabia, these sculptures are highly contemporary. Thanks for bringing them to us, Susie.

    All the best to you and yours for 2010! I hope it is a break through year for you!

  17. Happy New Year Susie: Hard to believe you’ve only been in Saudia Arabia for two years!!!! Thank you for sharing so much of the landscape and culture with us. Here’s to another great year of living and blogging in 2010!


  18. Dimple says:

    That is an interesting sculpture; when I noticed the missile on top I wondered what it meant. Thanks for the explanation. I am surprised about the roundabouts being dangerous, at least to other vehicles. They make so much sense…but I guess that is leaving out the human propensity to bend and break the rules!
    Best wishes for the new year!

    • What makes the roundabouts so dangerous is that the larger ones may have four lanes of traffic coming in from four different directions, so with cars merging in to all the lanes and then the cars that are trying to merge out from each of the lanes, it just spells disaster. I have screamed at the near misses so much that it makes my husband even more nervous – I don’t mean to but I can’t help it! A few of the large roundabouts have stop lights but they are still quite dangerous because of all the lane changing that occurs and all the cutting off other cars that happens. More contributing factors are that there really seems to be no traffic rules here at all and there is certainly no traffic enforcement, and when you couple that with the pure testosterone levels behind the wheel since women cannot drive here, plus the fact that you have countless male foreign drivers, hired specifically to drive the women around, who come from countries where driving is pure mayhem, everything adds up to a recipe for calamity.

  19. Grami says:

    What a striking sculpture to look at! Is that a missile on the top?

    Happy New Year Susie and your family.

  20. Erin says:

    happy new year susie.
    enjoyed this post very much. i still am amazed at all the public art that you’ve in Jeddah. it makes for an interesting cityscape…old/new blending together.
    have a wonderful weekend.

    • Thanks, Erin. The public art here is pretty amazing and quite unique. I have published so much of it that I have created a new page with links for all of the sculpture posts I have done. Right below the header is where you can click on “Sculptures of Jeddah.” I’ll keep adding to it as I post more and more of the artwork.

  21. B Squared says:

    Best wishes to you and your family during the coming year. I always enjoy the slice of life and the perspective you present. Looking forward to the coming year and more views of your adoptive country.

  22. A great capture, Susie, as always! Very stunning sculpture! Wishing you and your family a very Happy New Year! It has been such fun getting acquainted with you online and I do hope one of these days when you’re visiting Seattle we can finally meet! Thank you so much for your visits to my blog and for your kind comments over the past months.



  23. Hilda says:

    I hope the road changes work. And I really like the sculpture. The central post reminds me of a mechanical pencil, but still… Very interesting.

    Happy New Year!

  24. Al says:

    Great shot of an interesting sculpture. I’ve just discovered your blog and enjoy seeing pictures and reading about your experiences in a culture so different from my own. Happy New Year!

  25. Julie says:

    I have long wondered at the wisdom of placing items of interest in the middle of roundabouts. Here in Sydney it is often that we have beautiful flower plantings in the middle of the road which means that people are trying to do two things at once.

    I wish you health and happiness as we journey into 2010.

  26. Eileen says:

    It is a cool looking monument! Great photo.

    Happy New Years to you and yours!

  27. Müge says:

    Creative and interesting sculpture! Happy New Year! 🙂

  28. Yogi says:

    What an amazing sculpture! The engineer in me loves it. I just wonder how it would be received in the USA. Not very well from some I would suspect.

    Have a great New Year. I have learned so much from you.

  29. Dina says:

    Another interesting and unusual artwork.
    I never understood why we started changing to roundabouts. Pretty scary, they are.

    Wishing all of us good changes in the new decade.
    May we all have personal inner peace and peace in and between our countries.
    Mah is-salaameh, dear Susie.

  30. Max-e says:

    That is an interesting sculpture against a very clear blue sky.
    Hope you have a really great New Year,

  31. Fishing Guy says:

    Susie: That monument turned out pretty cool. I hope you are having a great New Years celebration.

  32. Happy New Year Susie! I hope your new year is filled with love and happiness.

  33. ewok1993 says:

    Health and wealth this coming new year. And more power to your blogging. I enjoyed each visit.

    Happy New Year.

  34. Linda Jacobs says:

    What an absolutely perfect sky! Interesting post! Happy New Year!

  35. Carver says:

    Great shot and such a powerful sculpture. Wishing you and yours a Happy New Year!

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