Anthills for Chevron Gas Aust

Investment/arts partnership
Chevron Aust Pty Ltd & Melting Pot Glass Studio
 
 

chevron anthill presentation

chevron anthill paperweight

 

"The best design outcomes result from true collaborative spirit, where the line between commissioner and designer is blurred… The quality of work which continues to evolve from (this style of) partnership is a unique example of this philosophy in practice.”

Dominic Hofstede, Australian Graphic Design Association, Victoria Councillor 2009–2010

 
Can you blow 2000 glass termite mounds in eight weeks?

Yes you can, if you are West Australian glass artist Gerry Reilly responding to Chevron Australia's search for an iconic handcrafted gift that captures the landscape and natural beauty of the Onslow region.

"As we break ground at Ashburton North, home of the Chevron-operated Wheatstone Project, we've not only commenced construction, but also sparked the beginning of a long term investment in Australia's future,” said Chevron Australia's Managing Director, Roy Krzywosinski.

The partnership between Chevron Australia and Gerry Reilly's Melting Pot Glass Studio has seen a significant investment by a major resource company in Western Australian arts practice, through this unique Margaret River glass artist studio, now in its 21st year.

Reilly worked throughout with a team of up to three skilled glassmakers, including his son and glass trainee, Ned Reilly, and colleague Rick Cook.

Firstly the glass is collected from the furnace, then the layers of coloured glass that form the internal design are added and manipulated. This is then encapsulated in clear glass and shaped hot at the furnace, before annealing (cooling slowing) overnight.

Post-production and cold finishing by Melting Pot gallery staff and glass engraver/sandblaster, Robert Pinatoba and team of Exclusive Trophies continued the collaborative ‘handmade' journey, to Chevron Australia Events Coordination team, who completed the final packaging for the 2000 boxed presentation gifts.

"This commission came in the mid-winter, in a year when many niche arts practices, and small tourism and retail businesses, are having to conquer significant challenges in difficult economic times,” said Melting Pot Manager/Partner, Margot Edwards.

As a challenging project, Chevron's investment brought together a team of Western Australian artists and chain of local and interstate suppliers, to create an distinctive, unique hand-crafted gift for a diverse range of Chevron's corporate and community partners, Australia-wide and internationally.

Gerry Reilly drew inspiration for this edition from the dramatic colours and textures of the North West of WA, after viewing images of paintings by Thalanyji artist, Anne Hayes. Working closely with Chevron, Reilly designed an artwork that expressed boththe company's close relationship with the landscape of the Pilbara and the community of Onslow.

"The termite mounds of the Pilbara are so distinctive and the landscape so overwhelming at first, but gradually it seeps in and stays with you forever,” he said.

Starting mid August 2011, Gerry Reilly and his team worked for several months on the project, producing up to ten individually handcrafted pieces per hour.

"In the weeks from inception to completion of this edition, I reminded myself regularly of the many individuals in the resource industry, working in teams, in tough conditions, a long way from home…” he said.

Contact details:

Gerry Reilly and Margot Edwards, Melting Pot Glass Studio

+61.8.97572252

Guy Houston, Chevron Australia

+61.8.94855745

     
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