Edinburgh Gardens Plinth Project – Yarra City Council

The ‘Unsung Hero’ has been granted the honour of sitting atop the plinth in Edinburgh Gardens in September for 18 months.

  • The Unsung Hero / 2019 / Under construction / Conceptual image by Kathy Holowko

Let us put the earthworm on the plinth! The plinth is the historical site for the revered, those deemed worthy to respect, remember and admire; the coloniser, and the war hero. Meanwhile the earthworm is ignored. Silently in darkness it goes about its business, doing the important and under-rated work of creating healthy soil. Even those white men on plinths have the worm to thank for their strength and energy … in some part. The earthworm is one of the hardest working and most unrecognised members of our biotic community. It is time to honour the earthworm. Let us raise the status of the worm with this art object and give it the heroes honour that it deserves. All hail the earthworm. Earthworms, afterall, turn decaying matter into nutrients, while their burrows bring water and air deep under ground providing the right conditions for plant root growth. The presence of these workers in soil is to be valued, as they are busily reconstituting waste into plant production for food and air. The ‘unsung hero’ is a symbolic recognition of the tremendous transfer of energy undertaken by these humble animals, in our service and as part of a complex community of biological life. 

The engagement between the plinth as a cultural structure and the placement of the humble earthworm playfully deconstructs the plinth cannon and has a depth of conviction in its intention. It is a reminder that we are part of earth systems and that the labourers within these biotic communities deserve to be honoured and remembered. Urban spaces are often where the decision makers, creators and planners of our complex systems exist and therefore an important place to reconnect with the essential knowledge of ecological cycles. Circular and ecological thinking in the way we may create, make and act, will serve us well in building a positive future world. 

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White Night – Ballarat

Spidergoat & the Insect Electro will make an appearance at Ballarat White Night on September 21 from 7pm – 2am.

  • Spidergoat &the Insect Electro / 2019  /   A collaboration with Pierre Proske. /. Photographs by Sarah Walker   /  Originally commissioned by The National Wool Museum

In a tangle of light‭, ‬sound and sculpture, this installation is like walking through a storybook‭. ‬This is no fairytale however‭. ‬The tale is eerie‭, ‬absorbing‭, ‬and downright bizarre‭. ‬Light filled cocoons with synchronised and synthesized insect percussion lead you through the alluring installation‭. ‬As you navigate along the winding path you unravel an unusual and thought provoking story about animal fibre ‭… ‬made almost entirely from wool‭. ‬This true story delves into weird experimentations to obtain the coveted threads of insect architecture‭. ‬Belying its beauty‭, ‬this work reflects on the ethics of nature falling under the gaze of industrial biologists and the growing possibilities of the synthetic kingdom being grafted onto the tree of life‭.‬

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Bendigo Conservatory – Children’s art experience in the conservatory

‘Pom-poms, possums, bats and books’ is an installation that will fill the Bendigo Conservatory from 27th September until Sunday 6th
October.

  • Pom-poms, possums, bats and books  /   Currently under construction. /  Conceptual image by Kathy Holowko

Let’s re-imagine Bendigo Creek! There is a very special project underway to improve the ecology of Bendigo Creek with lots of new planting that will make homes for the animals that live there. The beautiful glass Conservatory in Bendigo’s Rosalind Park will transform into an artful world where children can learn all about it! There will be giant pop up books, a fluffy Wattle Pom Pom Tree, a possum nest and lots of great activities. Children can learn to make a pom pom and add a bright yellow blossom to the special Bendigo Whirrakee Wattle tree … to help make it grow. They can think about what they would like to see along the Bendigo Creek and write it in the big book of ideas. Children can also learn to fold and create their own little book, all about the wonderful plants and animals they have seen. All the while, as children explore, make and learn there will be the sound of the babbling creek, the birds calling and frogs croaking.

This installation is a continuation of Kathy Holowko’s artwork that encourages observation and wonder for the natural world. Interested in exploring relationships and understanding of ecology she searches for narratives that can help reconsider our world as a cyclical, and shared habitat. This installation uses knowledge sharing through creative and playful activities to help inform, inspire and connect communities to the Bendigo Creek rehabilitation project.