(2018; Reclaimed Memorial Hall Auditorium parquetry flooring tiles, neon.)
Surrounded by their community, Healesville’s fallen and returned soldiers are honoured by name on a simple wooden parquetry floor tile imbued with the history of The Healesville Memorial Hall.
The Healesville Memorial Hall has served as a gathering place since it was built after World War 1 where returned soldiers and community members met, danced and even fell in love, whilst remembering those who were not lucky enough to return to their home town.
To coincide with the 20th anniversary of the first Toolangi Sculpture Trail, Ali was selected as one of 12 sculptors to participate in an artists residency in Toolangi Victoria, Australia. The artists spent 14 days living and working together in the Toolangi State Forest, to produce new sculptures for the Toolangi Sculpture Trail. Made predominately from materials found in the surrounding bush, the sculptures now reside,and are on show, until they are overtaken by nature.
‘Precious’ is Ali’s response to the Toolangi Forest and wider environmental issues.
Seemingly worthless, burnt logs, placed in a simple structure will protect us from the elements, whilst a golden glow from within evokes wonderment, wisdom, understanding and enlightenment. The sculpture holds within its octagonal shape the ultimate balance between material and invisible forces, and the infinite.
The smell of fire residue permiates the space; triggering conflicting memories of winter home fires, and summer bushfire season.
Precious 24ct gold leaf reflects light from the darkness; in stark contrast to the carbon black of the burnt logs, and focuses the mind on the precious nature of what surrounds us, and is in jeopardy.
If we destroy our environment, our home, we will be void of protection and wonder…
Asking the question, ‘what needs to happen for us to value what we already have’, the work aims to alert us to the value of the environment that surrounds us.