Art Pharmacy were contacted by long time client, Deloitte, to create a sculpture to signify the “human spirit”, that would mark the beginning of the 2018 Invictus Games – an international multi-sport event created by Price Harry, in which wounded, injured or sick armed service personnel and their associated veterans take part in sport events.
Deloitte wanted the sculpture to sit in their new welcome lounge on level 9 of their office building in Sydney CBD. It was to be created as a permanent fixture, to remain relevant after the 2018 Invictus Games. Art Pharmacy had four months to commission and manage an artist who was to create the sculpture, before installing at the Deloitte CBD offices.
Implementation took place over two days and was documented by a photographer. The installation created was named ‘Parts Of A Whole’ and is characterised by its distinctive arrangement of similar, yet unique, components. Through the use of tension and balance, these components form a community, whose intrinsic support comes from an interdependence on each other while still acting individually. Structurally, the work is a metaphor for the human spirit, of stories and experiences, with each unique contributing part of the community harness the power of the inter-connected group.
The client loved the new installation, calling it ‘fantastic’, with members of the Deloitte team taking photos (and selfies) in front of it. Ahead of the Invictus Games, Art Pharmacy is extremely happy that this community-themed project was such a success.
For the project, Art Pharmacy commissioned local creatives and designers, Jonathan Biet and Sophie Bain. By observing and embracing the cracks, flawlessness and nuances of the settings surrounding them, they create works which are a physical interpretation of the emotions and characteristics they absorb throughout the process.
We chatted to Sophie about the sculpture she created for the client:
Tell us about your concept for Deloitte:
This work studies movement and reflection while also embracing the imperfections we all have that make us individuals. Quite literally we have made an army where no two pieces are the same. We wanted the work to include the viewer, so as they walk past their reflection is picked up in the angled faces thus including them in the artwork and the community it represents.
How have you attempted to invoke the spirit of the upcoming Invictus games in your practice?
We chose to look at the effect disability has on a whole community rather than the individual to highlight that this is not a journey anyone should take alone.
The Invictus Games provides that network for its competitors to find encouragement, witness strength and be inspired by others around them and we felt it was important to show that it takes village. Hopefully this will encourage open discussion and sharing of experiences between veterans and their biggest supporters, the community around them.
What experience do you want people viewing the work to have?
We are honoured to install this artwork in the foyer of Deloitte’s Sydney office in one of Harry Seidler’s most important buildings. Visitors to Deloitte will already be aware of the contribution the company make not only to the Invictus Games but also to the arts. Hopefully this artwork will capture the imagination of anyone who passes it and encourage the imagination of anyone able to take it in over a longer period of time. There are thousands of components which we hope will mean something different to every viewer.
What was the biggest unexpected challenge of creating a work like this?
This artwork absolutely had to be approached from more of an engineering angle. We really wanted to make sure it had a floating appearance and didn’t rely on huge amounts of framework despite its weight. Each block is also intended to rotate, allowing the work to constantly change its appearance, so we had to fight with gravity to prevent the blocks compounding together. The last challenge was the curve in the wall and creating something that would fit perfectly to this arc while also working in another space, should the work ever be moved.