The Wellington Sculpture Trust has put out a request to young sculptors to propose a work for one of three plinths to be built outside Te Papa. The work will remain on view for around two years. Art followers will know that there are a number of these what-will-we-put-on-the-plinth? projects outside art museums at the moment including the Fourth Plinth project outside the National Gallery's in London and, more recently, the Art Gallery of New South Wales. In the London effort well established artists and big budgets were involved. We are told the payment to the artist available for the Wellington plinth project is around $20,000. This includes the artist’s fee for the idea along with all expenses and the costs involved in construction and deinstallation. A work that can stand up to two years of Wellington weather will need to meet pretty much the same standards of design and construction as a permanent work, especially when you take into account the safety requirements on any object placed in a public area. Sculptors submitting proposals will need to consider such budget items as site visits, drawings, presentation of concept, contract negotiations and consultation, engineer’s report for OSH sign off, fabrication, freight to Wellington, accommodation, installation (people and fixtures), maintenance, deinstallation, making good and return freight.
Image: The fourth plinth waiting for sculpture outside the National Gallery in London’s Trafalgar Square