Mt Barney Blog

​Flindersia Sculpture

Thursday, June 01, 2017


A relaxing day off at the beach in September last year resulted in the acquisition of the first piece of sculpture for Mt Barney Lodge.

The SWELL Sculpture Festival is a free, outdoor sculpture exhibition on the beaches, river inlet, rocks and parklands at Currumbin.

Tracey and Innes wandered around in 2016 on what was a perfect day, experiencing the amazing array of sculptures that ranged from old washing machines representing the first fleet, to giant beach-chairs, an Egyptian pyramid made entirely from bread trays and a colony of man-sized ants swarming over the iconic Currumbin Rock.  

Tracey's pick...

Innes pick...

Art, as it does, appeals to different people for different reasons, but what Tracey and Innes could agree on was the appeal of the collection of about five smaller copper sculptures representing native seedpods by Alicia Lane.

They ticked all our eco boxes, including the subject, the artist statement, and the fact that they were made from old laundry coppers!!

From Alicia’s website

“In the early days of settlement significant quantities of timbers such as Red Cedar, Crows Ash, and Hoop Pine were logged in the Gold Coast region, ultimately resulting in the clearing and degradation of large areas of rainforest and the dispossession of Aboriginal peoples from their land. Many of these timbers were used in house construction and boat building, surviving in this form to the present day. These works, created from salvaged copper boilers and other everyday metal objects, respond to our complex and often destructive relationships with the land."

When Tracey and Innes enquired about the process of purchasing just one of the pieces, they were advised that the judges had selected this entry as the overall winner, and had been given the prestigious 2016 SWELL Sculpture Award … so with this pedigree, the pieces had already been sold!

The confirmation of our good taste by the judges agreement, didn’t take away the disappointment of missing out after making what was such a BIG decision … as it isn’t everyday that you decide to select a sculpture.

The process on settling on a decision was fun, took much to-ing and fro-ing, and included lunch at the iconic Elephant Rock Café overlooking the parkland where the sculpture was installed.

Fortunately, Alicia agreed to a commission of reproducing a similar piece, and as they say, no two pieces of art are the same.

We would have to wait another 10 months before taking receipt of her new piece, and having her install it.


A larger-than-life crow's ash seedpod was installed by Alicia at the office entrance at Mt Barney Lodge on July 20, 2017.


By coincidence, the driveway leading from the front gate to the office is lined by the trees that bear this distinctive and attractive seedpod – Flindersia Australia, or native crow’s ash.

SWELL attracts awe-inspiring sculptures by local, national and international artists. There have been a number of Scenic Rim artists in past years including Christopher Trotter,  Anton Bruisma, and Catherine Anderson.

If you aren’t staying with us on the 8-17 September 2017, then we recommend you do the next best thing, and explore and experience the unique 15th SWELL festival as it showcases People – Art – Place.

We might even see you there!!


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