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‘Bigger’ work by Sculpture by the Sea star for Denman Prospect

By Charlotte Harper - 9 October 2016 7

Sphere at Denman Prospect

Denman Prospect developer Terry Snow saw the striking steel sculpture that won the $60,000 major prize at last year’s Sculpture by the Sea and decided he would commission one like it “but bigger” to mark one of the entrances to the new Molonglo suburb.

The resulting work’s German sculptor, Jorg Plickat, was in Canberra last week to oversee the installation and unveiling of the 4.5m “Sphere” in the new suburb.

Mr Plickat works predominantly with natural stone, bronze and corten steel, and currently divides his time primarily between China and Spain. In 2017, he will conduct workshops in Italy, in the white marble caves at Carrara, Tuscany.

“[Attendees] will all make a piece from this authentic marble of Michelangelo,” he said.

The artist has participated in more than 350 exhibitions worldwide and created and installed more than 85 public sculptures across four continents.

He said “Sphere” consisted of five parts, representing five continents or trade routes of the earth.

“Here it’s the capital of Australia, here political connections are made with the world, so I think that’s the right place to put this sculpture,” Mr Plickat said.

“Of course every nation must have its own national interest, but with problems like pollution, like global warming, politicians must work together, to solve the problems to leave a good continent for the generations after them.”

Sphere at Denman Prospect

Constructed from corten steel, the work weighs three and a half tonnes, and is in the same style as his award-winning entry in last year’s Sculpture by the Sea at Bondi in Sydney.

That work, “divided planet”, was “a statement of lament at the wasted energy of political leaders who fail to overcome their differences, rather than uniting to address urgent human and environmental catastrophes such as poverty and global warming”.

Mr Snow, chief executive of Capital Estate Developments and Canberra Airport chairman, said it was in his company’s DNA to want to do something special at Denman Prospect.

“We wanted to put our touch on it, and that was to enhance the landscaping, improve the quality and size of the plantings, and have more interesting plants and vegetation in the subdivision,” he said.

“It’s important that we develop this arts program for the subdivision, we’ve identified six artists, and it’s quite fitting that Jorg is here today, because Jorg is of international standing, he won the Sculpture by the Sea for a piece not dissimilar to this, but a lot smaller, and Jorg is represented at significant places like Bawley Point NSW [and] all through Europe.

“When I saw the Sculpture by the Sea, I said, ‘Well this is something we should bring here but bigger’, and this is what we got, without any fuss at all, with very quick turnaround … [it’d] be a good lesson for the Australia construction industry that in about two weeks we had a design and a price and we were all ready to go.”

Sphere at Denman Prospect

Mr Snow said there were six sculptures still to come for Denman Prospect, from a mixture of local, interstate and international artists.

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7 Responses to
‘Bigger’ work by Sculpture by the Sea star for Denman Prospect
1
wildturkeycanoe 6:20 am
10 Oct 16
#

Yawn! Another uninteresting piece of rusty metal to litter the landscape of this picturesque Capital. Isn’t there anything better around than a blob of rusty pieces of steel, which probably has a carbon footprint greater than a standard Molonglo house block?

2
JesintaBale 9:19 am
10 Oct 16
#

I think its a beautiful concept, however not many people seem to get the idea. And nor will they try to find the idea. I feel like it doesn’t really add much value :/

3
Charlotte Harper 9:29 am
10 Oct 16
#

wildturkeycanoe said :

Yawn! Another uninteresting piece of rusty metal to litter the landscape of this picturesque Capital. Isn’t there anything better around than a blob of rusty pieces of steel, which probably has a carbon footprint greater than a standard Molonglo house block?

Have you seen it? I went out there to have a look and take the photos and I reckon it’s stunning and much more interesting to look at than the street signs and light poles at the entrance to my suburb. Can you give an example of public art that you do like?

4
rommeldog56 9:52 am
10 Oct 16
#

Charlotte Harper said :

Have you seen it? I went out there to have a look and take the photos and I reckon it’s stunning and much more interesting to look at than the street signs and light poles at the entrance to my suburb. Can you give an example of public art that you do like?

It certainly is an imposing piece to see in the flesh. Except for that rusty finish, I dont mind it. Wonder how long it will take for the taggers to leave their mark on it.

5
I am a Rabbit™ 10:27 am
10 Oct 16
#

I’m not quite sure if brutalist architecture style is a good fit considering the message, but to each his own I suppose.

6
JC 4:18 pm
10 Oct 16
#

I am a Rabbit™ said :

I’m not quite sure if brutalist architecture style is a good fit considering the message, but to each his own I suppose.

Brutalist? Where is the concrete? That is the hallmark of brutalist architecture.

Think High Court, or the Cameron and Benjamin Offices in Belconnen.

7
wildturkeycanoe 8:19 am
12 Oct 16
#

Charlotte Harper said :

Can you give an example of public art that you do like?

There is plenty of it at the National Gallery, some examples that I was pleased to go and see were the exhibits of Tom Roberts.
Art is obviously appreciated differently by different people. I am attracted to landscapes that try to represent life in as much accuracy as the artist can.
The obscure, random tacking of pieces of junk together and then calling it art doesn’t really exhibit any real talent in my opinion. Anybody could produce something like that with a welder, scrap metal and no idea at all. It takes real talent to portray something that looks like the original even with a little artistic license, but simply throwing a car into a compactor and labeling it as a portrayal of some deep emotional conflict is just plain rubbish.
In real art, just like poetry, you form the verses with words that convey an idea that can be understood by the audience, that has structure, rhythm and rhyme. Whacking a heap of random words together in a higgledy-piggledy fashion and then needing to translate to the audience what it means defeats the purpose of writing it in the first place.
Art has to entertain, to convey a message, to mean something to somebody else than the artist. If it needs to have a written description telling us what it represents because it is so obscure the message is lost, then why create it in the first place?
From the OP – “with very quick turnaround … [it’d] be a good lesson for the Australia construction industry that in about two weeks we had a design and a price and we were all ready to go”.
Constructing a building that conforms to regulations, will not topple at the first gust of wind and doesn’t cost the equivalent of a mass transit system for the A.C.T takes a serious amount of consideration, design and time. Rushing through without planning it properly would see disasters befall the city as multi-storey sky scrapers crumble to the ground. There is no comparison, the building industry is doing a fine job on its own without Mr Snow’s input, thank you very much.

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