Thursday, January 26, 2012

Roadside Serra

If American sculptor Richard Serra were to visit Auckland and take a ride along the Upper Harbour Highway, he might be forgiven for thinking he had been either ripped off or weirdly honoured by Auckland Transport. Alan Gibbs might be less amused. It was Gibbs who commissioned Serra’s great work Te Tuhirangi Contour on his Kaipara farm. No way the noise control walls alongside the winding Harbour Highwaycould have been designed like this without the precedent of Richard Serra’s work. To add insult to injury they have been painted orange, a clear reference to the rust coloured original. Still these Serra copycats are a major step-up from the gecko and the pohutakawa, no one is likely to raise a hand to say their work had been copied in those two cases. But with everyone getting so snotty about Mr Dotcom ripping off creative content on the internet, spare a thought for Richard Serra.
Images: Top and bottom left Auckland Transport's effort. Bottom right Richard Serra's Te Tuhirangi Contour