Coral Lowry; Growing Together; 2012; H:3000 x W:2700 x D:150>400; mirror finish stainless steel.BHP Billiton 30th Anniversary Gift

  • Client BHP Billiton
  • Stakeholders and partners Nickel West and Jinchuan Group Ltd, China
  • Role of Artsource Employment Services
  • Artist Coral Lowry
  • Outcome Commissioned artwork
  • Artwork budget $100,000 (design & fabrication only)
  • Completion date 2012

Artist Coral Lowry and installation crew member in rflection of artwork 'Growing Together'.Growing Together is large-scale stainless steel sculpture, installed in a streetscape in the Northern desert town of Jinchuan in Ganzu Province of China. The work was commissioned by BHP Billiton as a gift to celebrate 30 years of trading between BHP Billiton - Nickel West and Jinchuan Group Ltd, China. The artwork was presented in a gifting ceremony following its installation in June 2012.

Coral Lowry was chosen to receive the commission from a shortlist of suitable Artsource members. The artwork brief was very specific in stipulating that the design should reflect mutual understanding and respect, friendship, mutual strength, prosperity and growth. Lowry is known for her thoughtful working process; she develops artwork concepts by closely studying the natural and created environment of their intended locations. In addition to responding to the brief, she drew inspiration for Growing Together from the powerful and infinite circle and the symbolic references to branch and the leaf.

The branch has symbolic meaning referring to peace and good will, while the leaf is an ancient heraldic symbol said to signify happiness. The bud, or new leaf, is a symbol of continuing life and hope for growth and prosperity into the future. Some leaves signify tenacity and perseverance while others signify time passing. In this case, the leaf specifically represents significant business relationship and friendship spanning 30 years between the two mining companies. The artwork thus pays tribute to the relationship and its continued strength into the future.

The artwork is fabricated from mirror finish stainless steel. This material was chosen to reflect the Jinchuan Groups’ production of stainless steel and alloys. The company is the largest nickel producer in Asia. It is a beautiful work and gesture; one that pays tribute on a larger scale to Australia’s close international trading ties and good relationships overseas.