Dance / “Belong”. QL2 at Theatre 3 until October 20. Reviewed by SAMARA PURNELL
Sasha Reid’s work, “Composition 5″, was announced the winner last night (September 20) at an event hosted by Genevieve Jacobs in the leafy neo-Tuscan surrounds of Shaw Vineyard Estate.
Created from “Y” shaped branches, “Composition 5”, forms into an abstract shape and is, the judges said, a sculpture that could be equally appreciated from a distance and also close up.“All things must grow and evolve,“ said Duncan Waugh, chair of the “Sculpture in the Paddock” committee, as he introduced the judges for the 2018 event.
Waugh was talking about the move of the popular event, founded by the late Kim Nelson and sculptor Al Phemister, from the historic Cooma Cottage near Yass to the elegant locale of Shaw Vineyard Estate in Murrumbateman.
With a hefty increase in prize money, which has risen to $15,000 for first, $3000 for emerging and $2000 for Miller’s Pharmacy Yass People’s Choice, the event looks set to attract large crowds of Canberrans to the bucolic exhibition of outdoor sculptures by artists around the region and well beyond.
The exhibition was curated by seasoned Queanbeyan sculptors Mariana Del Castillo and Alex Asch, who were on hand to watch the visitors enjoying the large layout of the sculpture walk thought the paddock.
The winners were announced by former ANU art school chief Gordon Bull who, with Jas Hugonnet from M16 Artspace, had co-judged the prize.While Reid could not be there to receive the cheque and trophy, winners of the $3000 “Sculpture in the Paddock Prize”, Southern Highlands artists Heidi McGeoch and Sam Larwill, were present. They drew praise from Bull for the “simple elegant geometry” of their joint work, “Connect the dots”, made of perforated steel which, he said, allowed the play of light and shadow.
One of the highlights of Sculpture in the Paddock for the last few years has been the Tuggeranong Arts Centre Prize, not of cash but something far more valuable – an exhibition. This year‘s winner was Sian Watson, for her attenuated figures made of Flowfill grout, paint, concrete, steel, wire mesh “On the Wire: 1, 2”.
Watson is, as they say in the art world, “hot”, with a spot in the coming “Contour 556″ on Lake Burley Griffin. She has also previously been singled out in Sculpture in the Paddock and was overall winner the 2016 Clearwater Sculpture Prize at Queanbeyan for a pack of dingo-type creatures prowling on the riverbank.
In a schools’ initiative created in recent years by Phemister, recognised artists have connected with students to teach technique and foster talent. The resulting works from local schools will be on display from today, September 21, promoting, he says: “The wonder and joy of creating sculptures across many mediums and inspiring future generations of artists.”
Vineyard owner Graeme Shaw was present to note that this year’s event also features an indoor exhibition of small works set in the architecturally-designed Shaw cellar door.An unusual highlight yesterday, signalling the increasing profile of the event, was the arrival in the morning of David Hurley, Governor of New South Wales, and David Hurley to admire Harried Fasher’s tribute to the WWI Beersheba charge, “The Last Charge”, and a dramatic re-enactment of the charge by horsemen from Murrumburrah.
Fasher’s sculpture was part of the impressive line-up of 43 works, which Waugh encouraged the public to see as “made for photos”.
“Sculpture in the Paddock”, 2018, Shaw Vineyard Estate, 34 Isabel drive, Murrumbateman, open to the public 10am-5pm, September 22 to October 7.
Food stalls and entertainment will be on hand over each of the three weekends. Information to sculptureinthepaddock.com.au