Self Extension, Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre


Client: Shoalhaven City Council

Location: Nowra, Australia

Completion date: 2017

Artwork budget: $10,000

Project Team

Public Art Agent

Fiona McFayden

Shoalhaven Regional Gallery

Public Art Agent

Shane Spencer

Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre


Elyssa Sykes-Smith


Self Extension, timber, paint, stainless steel, Shoalhaven City Council Public Art Grant 2017. The site-specific artwork depicts a life sized figure emerging from under the high mezzanine, just underneath the doorway to the conference room. The figure is shown
twisting itself, holding on to the underside of the mezzanine, with one
arm reaching out to the white wall where it projects timber fragments that
cascade energetically up the white wall reaching the ceiling.
The design is formed around the concept of the individuals quest for
personal progress achieved through creative resourcefulness.


The building, Shoalhaven Entertainment Centre, was a pre-existing architectural place. My goal was to create a site-specific sculptural artwork to respond to the existing forms and enhance the viewers experience of the foyer space. I chose to work in the stairwell as it allows the viewer many perspectives of the artwork as the ascend and descend the stairs between the conference and theatre rooms and the downstairs foyer. The white wall, essentially a blank canvas, provides the perfect backdrop to highlight the artwork. The artwork is visible from outside as the front of the building is created from glass panels.


This project was brought to life by myself (the designer and fabricator), the manager at the Shoalhaven Entertainment Center and the manager at the Shoalhaven Regional Art Gallery (who assisted with the design development and logistical planning) and two art installers (who assisted with the installation and creation of the artwork onsite). The artwork design changed considerably from the initial proposal due to available access for the install and ongoing maintenance to the building.