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Image L-R:  Chair, Sasha Kovic; Principal, Wayne Erickson; Artist, Michael Snape; Councillor HY William Chan. Image credit: Fancy Boy Photography

The official unveiling of our Public Art Project, ‘Become the Part’ took place on Saturday 18 June at a reception held in the new outdoor space.

The 10m long sculpture, designed by artists Michael Snape and Agatha Gothe-Snape in collaboration with landscape architects FJMT, is now in situ in a verdant garden on the corner of Carillon Ave and Missenden Road, creating a tranquil space for all of the Newtown community to enjoy.

In his welcome speech, Principal Wayne Erickson said:

“Behind these walls, we’ve thrived as a living and learning community because in everything we do we celebrate the values of connection and belonging. Anthropological theory tells us that humans cleave to community, and not only because of the great and mutual benefits that attach to that membership for both individual and the group, but because the invitation to become a part of it, and the worthy challenge attached to crossing the threshold into it, are all highly valued, and desired elements. What we love about Agatha and Michael’s work, and why it resonates with us, is that it reminds us of the generosity of that invitation, but also the anticipation of the joy we experience in having crossed that portal into the loving embrace of community.

This project is an invitation to the broader community to cut the corner; to walk across this more welcoming doormat; to perhaps take some time to pause and reflect on the many possibilities proposed by Michael and Agatha’s work, which from our perspective is an invitation to engage with, and understand, what St Andrew’s really is all about, as we seek to engage with and understand our neighbours and fellow travellers. Come in!! You’re very welcome here!”

“Come in!! You’re very welcome here!”

Principal Wayne Erickson

City of Sydney Councillor HY William Chan officially unveiled the sculpture at a reception attended by Chair of College Council Sasha Kovic, Minister Alister Henskens, the Minister for Skills and Training, and Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology, Former College Principal Dr Bill Porges, Dr Reingard Porges, the artist Michael Snape, our Newtown neighbours, friends of College, students and staff.

The artist, Michael Snape, who in collaboration with his daughter, Agatha Gothe-Snape, created the sculpture said:

“The sculpture is more or less free-standing however, the work is placed on a corner, at a powerful intersection. The sculpture is framed by the landscaping and the voice of each gives to the other to make both voices audible. The sculpture itself is the product of a conversation between Sydney City Council and St Andrew’s College.

The culture of St Andrew’s specifically, places emphasis on being part of a community. To not be a part is not to be strong and not belong.

From whichever perspective the words can be read, the already large words expand. They are wrought here from molten earth and through the letters you can walk, or rest, or take shelter. The walls of steel blend with the shapes of stone walls of the college, bringing the background forward into the shared space.

That ART as part of PART should find itself to have a final singular dedicated plate in this space is coincidental. When things come together however, you don’t argue.”

Chair of Council, Sasha Kovic, expressed thanks to the many people who collaborated on this project to bring it to fruition including:

  • Michael Snape and Agatha Gothe-Snape
  • FJMT Landscape Architects
  • Spectrum Partners Project Managers
  • Marsupial – Principal Landscape Contractor
  • City of Sydney Public Art Advisory Panel and Councillor HY William Chan
  • Eleanor Gammell, former Councillor
  • Charlie Taylor, former Chair of Council
  • Stuart Niven, Chair of the Major Works Committee
  • Campbell Hanan, former Chair of the Major Works Committee
  • Ian Smith, Director of Operations

 Ms Kovic said:

“What an amazing milestone we are celebrating today. A lot of planning, designing and building has gone into this piece of public artwork over the last three and a half years.

As the current Chair of Council and as a former student, I’m very proud of what we have achieved with this project and what it represents more broadly for our students and the surrounding community. It’s fantastic to have such a tactile piece of artwork that the whole community can enjoy and bring us together.”

Photographs from the official unveiling can be seen here. Thank you to Fancy Boy Photography.