NOAH’S EGG BY RACHEL JOYNT AT UCD
Rachel Joynt was commissioned by leading horse-trainer Dermot Weld to make this sculpture for the new Veterinary Medicine building. The quote beside the piece ‘Omne vivum ex ovo’ means all things come from the egg. Sperm like shapes cover the surface of the egg and include depictions of bulls, rats and hamsters as well as man. The sculpture is decorated with small holes, which create a planetarium-like effect when viewed from the pointed end.
Rachel Joynt (born 1966 in County Kerry) is an Irish sculptor who has created some prominent Irish public art. She graduated from the National College of Art and Design in Dublin in 1989 with a degree in sculpture.
Her father, Dick Joynt, was also a sculptor. Rachel Joynt is preoccupied by ideas of place, history and nature, and her work often examines the past as a substrate of the present. Her commissions include People’s Island (1988) in which brass footprints and bird feet criss-cross a well-traversed pedestrian island near Dublin’s O’Connell Bridge. She collaborated with Remco de Fouw to make Perpetual Motion (1995), a large sphere with road markings which stands on the Naas dual carriageway. This has been described by Public Art Ireland as ‘probably Ireland’s best known sculpture’ and was featured, as a visual shorthand for leaving Dublin, in The Apology, a Guinness advert. Joynt also made the 900 underlit glass cobblestones which were installed in early 2005 along the edge of Dublin’s River Liffey; many of these cobblestones contain bronze or silver fish.
‘NOAH’S EGG’, a giant cast-bronze egg sculpture, was unveiled on Tuesday 8 June 2004 by leading trainer, Dermot Weld at the UCD Veterinary School in Belfield. The sculpture was a gift from Dermot Weld to the UCD Faculty of Veterinary Medicine.
Noah’s Egg represents the beginnings and potential of life, and symbolises both the field of veterinary medicine and the scholarly pursuits and ambitions of the Veterinary students and staff.
Noah’s Egg, which was created by Rachel Joynt, is an interactive sculpture. It is decorated with small holes, which create a planetarium-like effect when viewed from the pointed end. The Egg’s ochre, shell-like surface is richly textured with sperm-like shapes of various creatures including man, bull, rabbit, guinea pig, rat, mouse and hamster. At night, Noah’s Egg will be illuminated by a warm red glow like an incubator light. Noah’s Egg sits outside the UCD Veterinary Faculty’s new state-of-the-art premises at Belfield.
At the unveiling ceremony Dr Hugh Brady, President of UCD said, “It is our ambition that the UCD Veterinary School be recognised as an international leader in veterinary education, research and clinical service. We are delighted that a graduate of the faculty, Dermot Weld, has generously donated this magnificent sculpture to UCD as a symbol of this ambition.”
UCD’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine moved to its new purpose-built facility at Belfield in 2002. The new building provides students with an ideal environment to undertake their studies in Veterinary Medicine, with laboratories suited to the pursuit of innovative research and a superbly planned veterinary hospital to observe and practice veterinary medicine first hand.
The Veterinary School is adjacent to the Faculties of Agriculture and Science and the Conway Institute for Biomolecular and Biomedical Research, which ensures that the School is well positioned to participate in the exciting developments in the life sciences at UCD.