site blessing for the new sculpture site blessing for the new sculpture CREDIT: Far North District Council

Site blessing paves the way for Booth sculpture

Wednesday 11 February 2009, 6:40AM
By Far North District Council


A site on the Kerikeri Domain for the Chris Booth sculpture has been blessed and work is expected to start before the end of the month in preparation for the construction phase.

The sculpture in boulder columns with bronze elements is one of the most significant public artworks to have been commissioned anywhere in New Zealand.

It will stand over 10 metres high with a base diameter of over 16 metres, featuring five stone columns, over 100 stone boulders, bronze elements up to three metres tall, and a cascading water feature.

The work was made possible by a substantial donation from an anonymous local benefactor.

The sections which make up the finished work have already been completed and will be transported to the Domain ready for installation by the Kerikeri sculptor as soon as the preliminary groundwork has been completed and services connected to the site. Installation is expected to be completed in April.

Chris Booth is known worldwide for his unusual works featuring natural stone, including the Echo can de Veluwe in the Netherlands, the entrance portal to Albert Park at Auckland, the Nga uri o Hinetuparimaunga at the Hamilton Gardens, and numerous public and private commissions in the Far North including the Rainbow Warrior Memorial at Matauri Bay.

Progress on the project has been made possible after agreement in principle was reached last week between Domain users, the council, the sculpture benefactor and the sculptor on the exact location for the work.

The council intends also to proceed as quickly as possible with the re-alignment of the existing Rugby field and the redevelopment of the domain, to have the new facilities ready for the beginning of Rugby's National Provincial Championship season which starts in August.