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Wellington Gateway and Landmark Project (1993-95) Introduction Located in an attractive setting - five kms south of the Australian township of Wellington and 4 hours north-west of Sydney by road - this distinctive 'environmental sculpture' has already become a significant local icon and major regional landmark.  It not only identifies the turnoff from the Mitchell Highway to the Wellington Caves, but signifies travellers' arrival at the entrance to Wellington itself - hence its description as 'The Wellington Gateway'. The sculpture contains impressions of Wellington derived from research conducted by the project artist and consultations with the project's committee and the community. As the regular flow of visitors to the site discover, there are many highly original features to the work itself - some not instantly apparent.  Providing time to explore is a good idea. Because of its capacity to play with light and shadow,the sculpture's components also assume totally different moods at different times of the day.  The weathered materials, deliberately used in its creation, seem to possess a parallel geological sense of age and time to that found in the fossil and skeleton forms so prevalent in the area's nearby subterranean caves.  Spirit of Gaudi? To some observers, the use of welded rail anchors and many other decorative elements in the Gateway ... and the way they grow out of its body ... creates a feeling reminiscent of the somewhat bizarre (but totally fascinating) decorative elements found in the architectural designs of Antoni Gaudi in Barcelona.  Similarly, the stonework brings to mind something of the environmental sculptures of artists such as Andy Goldsworthy (UK). However, project artist Frances Ferguson's designs are uniquely her own, forming part of a much wider and impressive body of work - extending over her entire artistic career.  She was always a highly versatile artist, and besides regular exhibitions of paintings, her talents encompassed designs for theatre including stage sets and costumes; diverse craftworks;  jewellery; wearable art; furniture decorations; festival effigies and articulated puppets. Her skills and creations always amazed and touched the people and communities she worked and lived in. Experiencing the Gateway Possibly the most entrancing or atmospheric way to experience the many qualities of the Gateway Sculpture is to arrive at the site around sunset or sunrise.  During a full moon is another great option. A visit at these times allows people to more acutely observe  and contemplate the peacefulness and magic of the work's changing moods.  In the background, nature adds a soundtrack. It is easy to meditate on the raw beauty of it all. The surrounding environment also evokes something of the spirit of the land so important to its original Wiradjuri inhabitants. (Contemporary Wiradjuri art forms a part of the sculpture.)                                                                      - Bruce Dickson The Wellington Gateway: Historic context and significance Project Artist: Frances Ferguson (1962-2003)  
Wellington Gateway, New South Wales, Australia  Artist: Fran Ferguson
Public Art Project