Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe
Cottesloe Beach, Perth, Western Australia
You Want to do What?!! (Tow an Iceberg from Antarctica)
The inspiration for this piece of work came while I was sitting on Cottesloe Beach, needing a drink and looking at the top of my empty Mount Franklin water bottle. It was all contained in that bottle, the form and the concept together. When I am thinking about works and turning them over in my mind, sometimes I just see shapes or parts of the structure initially and then when the concept becomes clear I begin to make the work.
Literally as the works title says, it is a series of “icebergs” being towed from the South Pole in the quest for freshwater. The sculpture is a humorous twist on the actualisation of a “left of field” or “out of the box” proposed solution to water problems. This work is environmental, and examines the possible impact of man on the availability of fresh water at the expense to the environment.
Conceptually the artwork examines the binary opposites between art and science and the association between left and right brain thinking processes. It also reflects the reaction to or, perception of, an artist’s or scientists unique set of problem solving skills when an unconventional solution is proposed to a problem that is confounding the conventional experts.
On a small childs level the sculpture is an interactive playground, an environment to be enjoyed. I believe the sense of touch as a learning tool is important and want people to touch the work.
But physically the igloos also give a false sense of security, an unease, they beckon you to come in, and they will keep you protected while you are down at the beach, but they won’t stop you from getting sunburnt! Ordinarily you would expect an igloo to keep you snug and warm in sub zero temperatures, but on the hot beach the wind blows straight through. You are contained but exposed at the same time. Ice and hot sand. It becomes a series of contradictions. These polarities in experience are intensified when the work is inhabited by the viewer.