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Design Revealed For Sculpture At Stewart Plaza

Media Release – 6 August 2008

Design Revealed For New Permanent Sculpture At Stewart Plaza

The design for a major new permanent sculpture to be installed at the Stewart Plaza, on the corner of High and Colombo Streets, in central Christchurch has been revealed.

The sculpture by Wellington-based artist Regan Gentry, entitled Flour Power, is the first new public sculpture to be commissioned by the Christchurch City Council’s Public Art Advisory Group. Funding for the 13-metre high work has been made available from the Council’s recently reinstated Art in Public Places Fund and a substantial donation from the estate of the late Sir Robertson Stewart and Adrienne, Lady Stewart.

Flour Power, on the redeveloped site of the former Stewart Fountain, will also mark the contribution of the Stewart family to the city of Christchurch.

The sculpture will be unveiled to the public on 18 September 2008 and formally donated to the city at the beginning of the SCAPE 2008 Christchurch Biennial of Art in Public Space which is organised by the Art & Industry Biennial Trust.

The Trust, with the support of industry partners, is managing the development and installation of Flour Power. This is the seventh permanent artwork the Trust has project managed and the fourth in partnership with the Christchurch City Council.

Artist Regan Gentry says: “To the imaginative, Flour Power will give the appearance that a giant has walked through the city gathering lamp-posts like flowers, collecting them into a bunch, wrapping a tyre around them and placing the whole lot as a centerpiece in Stewart Plaza”.

“Flour Power has a point to make. In Canterbury, fields of crops have given way to fields of houses. Rows of wheat have been replaced by rows of streetlights. Farm tractors have grown smaller and multiplied exponentially, growing sleeker and faster, modified to ‘pull chicks’ instead of ploughs,” he says.

Adrienne, Lady Stewart says the work will be a good fit for Stewart Plaza. “The funding support confirms this city’s commitment to develop quality public artworks. Flour Power will have an impressive presence in Stewart Plaza, a site which has seen various artworks come and go over the years."

Anthony Wright, Chair of the Art & Industry Biennial Trust and the Public Art Advisory Group, says reinstatement of a fund for public art is a wonderful gift to the city and its residents.

“Regan Gentry’s work is a tribute to the richness and diversity of our arts in New Zealand and a perfect fit for the Stewart Plaza, where it will provide a welcoming space for all who use this popular corner of the city,” he says.

SCAPE 2008 (19 September – 2 November) is the fifth biennial of art in public space staged in Christchurch. This year’s theme Wandering Lines: Towards a New Culture of Space will see the temporary placement of many major works of public art around the city, by 25 artists from 15 countries.

Generously Supported by:

Christchurch City Council Public Art Advisory Group The Estate of the late Sir Robertson Stewart and Adrienne, Lady Stewart With special thanks to: Anderson Lloyd Lawyers, Beca, Boffa Miskell, Chambers PR, Fletcher Construction and Heritage Management Services

Note: The Public Art Advisory Group has been appointed by the Christchurch City Council and is comprised of representatives from the Christchurch Art Gallery, the City Council’s Strategy and Planning Unit, the Art & Industry Biennial Trust. It also includes an independent curator/art historian (Lara Strongman) and an elected member of the City Council (Claudia Reid). It is chaired by Anthony Wright, director of the Canterbury Museum and chair of Art & Industry Trust.


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