09 Jul 2015
A new permanent landmark can be seen standing tall over the Canterbury Plains today, as Neil Dawson’s Fanfare, New Zealand’s largest public sculpture, was officially presented and illuminated for the first time tonight.
Fanfare has progressed through an extraordinary journey over the past 10 years to find its home in Christchurch, the birth city of its notable sculptor, Neil Dawson. This visionary six-storey-high sphere is covered in 1.5 metre steel pinwheel fans and can be illuminated in a spectrum of colours at night. It started life as a celebration piece commissioned by the City of Sydney to ring in the New Year 2005 and was gifted to the people of Christchurch by the Lord Mayor of Sydney, Clover Moore in 2007.
“I’m thrilled to see Fanfare installed on the Northern Motorway and touched by the huge support the project has gained,” sculptor Neil Dawson says. “I’m amazed at the complexities of such an apparently simple object. Its installation required a collaborative effort from many others, whose design and organisational contributions helped turn a whim I had into a whimsical artwork. I look forward to getting to know the work in its new site and seeing what sort of life it has.”
In an announcement during the Fanfare dedication ceremony, the Honourable Maggie Barry, Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage, revealed that Creative New Zealand had contributed the final funding to secure Fanfare’s future.
This completes SCAPE Public Art’s fundraising target set at the Fanfare Launch Event held almost one year ago in June 2014.
“The SCAPE team has done a wonderful job to reach their funding target and galvanise the people of Canterbury in support of Fanfare. The sculpture will be a beautiful addition to Christchurch’s public spaces, which will hearten and inspire residents and visitors alike,” says Creative New Zealand Chief Executive Stephen Wainwright.
The installation of Fanfare has been a collaborative effort – involving local and national government, the corporate and arts sectors, and members of the public – facilitated by public art project-management specialists SCAPE Public Art.
Mayor Lianne Dalziel says she's enormously excited that Fanfare has found a new home as a stunning gateway to our city.
“For me, this sculpture represents a vision of our regeneration as a city and the rebirth of our local arts scene. At the same time, I am sure it will capture the imagination of Cantabrians and visitors alike as the gateway public art work which links Christchurch city with the Canterbury region,” she says.
“The completion of Fanfare has been a feat of creativity, design, meticulous planning, engineering and construction,” says Deborah McCormick, Director of SCAPE Public Art. “I’d like to sincerely thank and acknowledge everyone who has been involved, including hundreds of people from the community and from the business sector for their support of this legacy. I would especially like to congratulate Neil for this spectacular achievement.
Fanfare can be viewed up close via the car parks on Main North Road and the Northern Motorway off-ramp. Follow the walking path to the two look-outs, complete with legacy boards recognising those who have made the installation of Fanfare a success.
More detailed information about Fanfare and Neil Dawson is available on the website, www.fanfare.co.nz