Submitted by Juanjo Novella


Client: Municipality

Location: Nelson, New Zealand

Completion date: 2012

Artwork budget: $200,000

Project Team


Juanjo Novella


Landscape Architect

Peter Coubrough

Nelson City Council

Public Art Agent

Debbie Daniell Smith

Art and Heritage, Nelson City Council


It is a sculpture created to work as a powerful landmark in the entry of the city of Nelson, New Zealand. This sculpture was inspired by the relationship between the human being and the sea. It is a sea plant, a kind of coral looking to the sea and in which inside you can reach and feel protected. The citizen can see through the sculpture his environment in a special way. Shadows of sculpture are very important and a central concept of the whole performance.


The main goal was the interaction of people with the milestone and to represent the sea, the light and the projection of a new sculpture with the world into a contemporary viewpoint. The local Maori community takes a prominent role developing all the project, even with a celebration of several rituals.
Another primary aim is the sculpture as a place instead as an object, this way we got a powerful icon always alive.


The collaboration process was to work in the very closed way among the artist, Juanjo Novella, the Municipality with their engineers, landscape´s leader and the local Maori authorities. The communications and agreements were in every time very fruitful, and as a result, the sculpture was and is very important art action. Public art leader, Debbie Daniell-Smith, Arts & Heritage Advisor was the central coordinator in all the process.

Additional Information

The piece was prepared in the first steps in Basque Country, Spain, then shipping to Nelson and finally in facilities of Nelson was bending, welding and shaping. Features: Steel 25 mm thickness, weldings of total penetration and weight around 8 tons.