Client: Sentosa Development Corporation
Location: Singapore, Singapore
Completion date: 2018
Artwork budget: $300,000
Public Art Agent
B. Jane Cowie
Sentosa, a small island south of Singapore, is graced with a great variety of extraordinary flowering trees, shrubs and bushes. This foliage providing dappled shade, cooling colors and beautiful cascades of elegant flowers. Commissioned by the Sentosa Development Corporation, this public art commission focuses on the majesty of nature so visitors to Sentosa might re-look and indeed notice the many and varied flower inflorescence, colored seed pods, bright berries and tiny fruits which grow along the foreshores, hillsides and walkways of Sentosa.
The peacock flower lives up to its name with incredibly showy blossoms of orange and red. An evergreen which grows up to 5 meters in height with somewhat ungainly, wide spreading branches, can cover about the same area in width. The bowl shaped flowers, with five crinkled, unequal red/orange petals, has extraordinary prominent bright red stamens that extend way beyond the petal fringe. A fast growing plant, it can be shaped to create a tree or shrubby bush shape and so is widely used in Singapore as hedging, with its profusion of flowers.
Creating a cluster of large sculptural inflorescence directly references the surrounding tropical trees and their flowers. High, above the leafy canopy, the bright, elegant blooms signal new development and new growth. The installation heightens an awareness of the beautiful, unique and natural surroundings of Sentosa while signalling a sense of the fragility and vulnerability of nature.
Well known for her bold sense of color, dramatic style and innovative approach to art and glass-making, B. Jane Cowie carefully considers place and space when designing and making environmental sculptures and art installations. Kiln-formed glass flower forms and blown-glass buds were created in her small home/studio in Singapore. Working alone, this artist combines colorful glass with custom made metal components to create a tenuous synergy in this outdoor situation.