Local work in Sculpture in the Gardens

by Helen Martin
Since 2007,Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manurewa have curated a large-scale biennial outdoor sculpture exhibition. The November 16 opening of the 2019/2020 exhibition was a lively event, with performances from musicians and refugee and migrant youth group Mixit. Speakers celebrated the many people and organisations who contribute to the Gardens’ success, including Friends of the Botanic Gardens, who first initiated the idea of championing New Zealand artists by having high quality outdoor sculpture as a permanent part of the Gardens’ attractions.
With the exhibition showcasing 20 works selected from 90 proposals and beautifully displayed along a 2km walking trail, it is of special interest to us is that a piece by Helensville sculptor Jeff Thomson is featured and that Jeff is the only sculptor whose work has appeared in all seven exhibitions. Islands’, which is a unique and striking depiction of all the islands in the Hauraki Gulf, is shaped from used corrugated iron, water, galvanised steel mesh, hay, wire and wetland and aquatic plants, some of which were sourced from Helensville.
Votes for the Friends People’s Choice Award can be cast at the Visitor Centre or online at sculptureinthegardens.nz
The exhibition is open until 1 March at 102 Hill Road, Manurewa. Entry to Auckland Botanic Gardens is free.

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