A Canopy of Thoughts, First Prize, Sculpture at Scenic World 2015

Submitted by Elyssa Sykes-Smith

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Client: Scenic World

Location: Katoomba, Australia

Completion date: 2015

Artwork budget: $25,000

Project Team

Exhibition Coordinator

Justin Morrissey

Scenic World

Public Programs Coordinator

Marina Grasso

Scenic World

Overview

Recipient of First Prize and People’s Choice Prize. A Canopy of Thoughts is a site-specific installation that evolves around the notion of a grasped moment of clarity among the haze of uncertainty. Created from recycled timber, constructed onsite and suspended in the canopy this large-scale artwork is a response to the Jurassic rain-forest at Katoomba.

Goals

A Canopy of Thoughts is a site-specific installation that evolves around the notion of a grasped moment of clarity among the haze of uncertainty. Every person exists with a network of thoughts, of crisscrossing ideas, dilemmas and dreams that they generate and carry along with them consciously and subconsciously. In sculpture the physical evokes the emotional: Expressed visually these thoughts form a canopy above us – simultaneously protecting and blocking us. The protagonist in the artwork peers up into the overwhelming canopy of thoughts and in a moment of clarity reaches up to connect with a focused idea. We, as the protagonists in our own lives, become the roots for these thoughts to become formed ideas which can then be acted upon.

Process

The idea for the installation came from visiting and absorbing the character of the exhibition site in 2014. The stunning forest-scape lends itself to the imagination; the suspended nature of many of the trees and vines triggered the notion of suspended thought which has informed this installation.
The timber used in this installation is recycled material and directly relates to the surrounding trees, showing the transformation wood undergoes from its initial state as a tree, to processed material and then generating new life in sculptural form which will eventually disintegrate back to the earth.