Sculptures, labyrinths and a cellist

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ARTS: Sculpture in the Paddock was officially launched on Friday night and it is expected to be the biggest and most inclusive in its history.

It will be open to the public every Thursday through to Monday from 10am-4pm at Cooma Cottage, and runs until October 11.

MC’d by Genevieve Jacobs, from ABC 666 Radio Canberra, and officially opened by Director of Canberra Museum and Gallery Shane Breynard.

Sculpture in the Paddock 2015 has attracted an array of renowned Australian artists both locally and interstate, including Braidwood artists Suzie Bleach and Andy Townsend.

The judges this year will be Mr Breynard, bestselling author Monica McInerney and editor of Canberra CityNews Helen Musa.

Opening of Sculpture in the Paddock 2015 at Cooma Cottage. Paddock is open Thursday to Monday 10am-4pm.

Opening of Sculpture in the Paddock 2015 at Cooma Cottage. Paddock is open Thursday to Monday 10am-4pm.

Yass Valley Shire boasts an unusually high proportion of sculptors – some of national and international standing. Veteran sculptor Rosemary Madigan, whose work features in state gallery collections; Michael le Grand, past head of Sculpture at ANU; Wendy Teakel, current head of Sculpture at ANU; David Jenz and Phil Spelman, whose work can be found in public spaces throughout Canberra and beyond, and Lee Tunks who runs ‘Man of Steel’ a company that specializes in contemporary architectural and sculptural metalwork – to name just a few. On top of this, the town of Yass boasts no less than five sculptures by iconic Australian sculptor, the late Tom Bass.

Sculpture in the Paddock was originally conceived by award-winning sculptors Al Phemister and Duncan Waugh as part of the 2013 YASSarts Arts Trail. Mr Phemister believes that this year will be fantastic, with a wide and varied number of sculptures.

“There are 26 sculptures this year, 50 per cent of contributing artists are local the others come from all over,” Mr Phemister said.

“Students from ANU are submitting pieces, while others are travelling from Mudgee, the far south coast and interstate.

'Come on Rusty'by Sian Watson with 'King Stag'by Tobias Bennett in the background.

‘Come on Rusty’by Sian Watson with ‘King Stag’by Tobias Bennett in the background.

“Some of the artists from last year have gone all out to bring something new and fresh to this year’s Sculpture in the Paddock.”

Mr Phemister has tried to focus on encouraging young or aspiring artists to this year’s event, evident by the inclusion of the Yass Soldiers Club encouragement award.

“Local students will also be exhibiting inside Cooma Cottage for the duration of Sculpture in the Paddock,” he continued.

According to Mr Phemister, who divulged some insight into what is expected this year, each of the pieces compliment each other.

“It’s almost as if the artists have worked together,” he explained.

A free photography workshop is being held the first weekend on September 19 until 20.

“The idea is that Professional Photographers will meet any member of the public, using any kind of camera, who wants advice on how to take a good photo, and help them with composition and advice about light, etc.  People will be encouraged to post photos on social media, and two will be selected at random and awarded prizes, including accommodation packages supplied by the Eagle Hawk Hill resort,” Mr Phemister continued.

“What we have also included this year is a labyrinth.

'King Stag' by Tobias Bennett at Sculpture in the Paddock

‘King Stag’ by Tobias Bennett at Sculpture in the Paddock

“In collaboration with local yoga teachers, Emily Simpson who raised money for a labyrinth to be built in Centennial Park in 2014 and internationally renowned sculptor Rosemary Madigan, the labyrinth will be painted and classes involving the explanation and history of the labyrinth will be included throughout the exhibition.  Cellist Gillian Pereira will also be available on Sunday, October 4 for those to enjoy music as they walk the Labyrinth.”

Major prizes this year total more than $3,000, as well as the Yass Golf Club People’s Choice Award, a Yass Soldiers Club Encouragement award and a Tuggeranong Arts Centre Prize.

Organisers of the event are hoping that this years Sculpture in the Paddock will attract over 10,000 visitors onto the Cooma Cottage grounds.


‘Fountain ‘by Dan Moor recipient of the 2015 Sculpture in the Paddock prize.


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