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Castaways to Transform Foreshore

Date19 October 2020

The 2020 Castaways Sculpture Awards are almost here, with the Rockingham Beach Foreshore set to be transformed by dozens of sculptures created using recycled and repurposed materials. 

Castaways is the City of Rockingham’s premier art and culture event and is running from Saturday 24 October – Sunday 1 November 2020. 

Mayor Barry Sammels, Janice O'Meara and Lyn DiCiero standing with a Castaways art piece.

The event is highlighted by three exhibitions including the Main Exhibition on the Rockingham Foreshore, the Schools Exhibition in Churchill Park, and the Maquette and Small Sculpture Exhibition at the Rockingham Arts Centre. 

Artists and schools from across Western Australia use recycled and repurposed materials to create sculptures that reinforce messages around environmental awareness, with more than $26,000 in prize money available across a variety of categories.

This year, as artists reflect on the contemporary world, several works approach the subject of the COVID-19 pandemic. Peter James’ Trogdor the Scrap Dragon (in isolation) is bound to make an impact at three metres high with glowing red eyes activated by movement. COVID-19 by Carlo Sacchero expresses his distress for family and friends living with the pandemic in northern Italy. 

Messages of hope are seen through Carol Clitheroe’s Recovery, assisted by her two year-old grandson Leeuwin Clitheroe. The work is a towering female figure covered in butterflies – a symbol of endurance, change, hope, life and soul. Visitors should also look out for Janice O’Meara’s One Point Five, a stunning full size representation of a mare and foal, created from recycled copper, stainless steel and aluminium wire.  

“Castaways highlights the City of Rockingham’s strong commitment to recycling and its growing reputation as a centre of cultural activity,” City of Rockingham Mayor Barry Sammels said.

The event gives emerging and established artists an opportunity to demonstrate their artistic abilities and raise awareness of important environmental issues. The City is proud to deliver Castaways for the 12th time and gratefully acknowledges the contribution of event sponsors Alcoa Australia, Engie, Water Corporation, Waste Authority, Fremantle Ports, Lions Club of Rockingham and Artcom Fabrication. 

In a move designed to encourage an exchange of knowledge between more experienced artists and emerging artists, the event has a designated Guest Artist, Gordon Mitchell. Mitchell has 30 years of experience as an artist, designer and art educator. He will be available to speak to the public between 3pm – 4pm on Saturday 31 October at the Boardwalk. 

Curator Lyn DiCiero said works in Castaways were often poetic and thought-provoking, but also fun. ”Castaways 2020 promises to be an exceptional show, and visitors will not be disappointed,” she said. 

Castaways also aims to encourage environmentalism in future generations. Six primary schools and three secondary schools feature works in the Schools Competition this year.

Participating artists in Castaways 2020 include: Tony Jones, Stuart Bryce, Tony Pankiw, Denise Pepper, Joan Johnson, Carol Clitheroe, Yuko Yakahashi and Sean Adamas. 

Judges for Castaways Sculpture Awards in 2020 are Colin Walker (Director of the Art Gallery of WA) and Jon Tarry, public artist.

Castaways Schools Competition judges in 2020 are Sheryl Chant (Castaways participating artist and art teacher) and Gordon Mitchell (Castaways guest artist, public artist and art teacher at the Kalamunda Senior High School Gate Program for gifted art students).

Image: Mayor Barry Sammels, artist Janice O'Meara and Castaways Curator Lyn DiCiero standing with half of Janice O'Meara's signature piece, One Point Five. A full sized mare will accompany the foal on the Rockingham Beach Foreshore when Castaways begins. Picture: City of Rockingham.  

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