Public Art: Avalon Gate

Avalon Gate

  • Title of artwork: Avalon Gate
  • Materials: Galvanised, shaped, beaten and powder coated steel
  • Location: Avalon Development, West Street
  • Artist: Christian Funnell
  • Date: 2007
  • Online map: Avalon Gate Google map
  • Information and map download: Avalon Gate [PDF 346kb]

The Avalon Gate was designed and made by local artist Christian Funnell in 2007 and forms the entrance to the Avalon development. The huge gates are made up of a central panel of plant patterns and the head of a spiky pineapple that divides in two as the gate opens. On either side of the central panel are metal uprights which create a natural fence that is decorated with crab apples.

Funnell took inspiration from 'Avalon', the legendary island which was famous for its beautiful apples. He has used the pineapple, historically a rare fruit, to symbolise the exotic. The size and darkness of the gates also takes inspiration from 'The Island of the Dead', a painting by Arnold Böcklin in 1880. This, in contrast, gives the feel of the dark unknown at the point of approaching an island.

Some of Funnell's other public artworks include the 'Taj Gates' on Montpelier Road and the 'Airfix Gate' at Pelham Terrace. For more information on Funnell's work go to

Leading up to the gates is a paved area designed by landscape architect Fiona Atkinson who has also worked on many public art projects in the city, such as the paving on the nearby seafront.

See the next artwork: Black Lion Street Railings