Penola sculpture appeal

The Penola Town Square Working Group is appealing for funds for a sculpture which will celebrate the women of the Penola and Coonawarra 

The Corten steel sculpture will be established at the Alfred Street end of the Penola Town Square and will be called ‘Generosity of Spirit’.

Penola Town Square Working Group secretary Anne Johnson said the idea for the sculpture came about after seeing a national call for women to have more prominence in Australian public art.

The planned sculpture is a woman in her work boots lifting a young girl high in the air and Ms Johnson said it would be uplifting, positive and meaningful for the community.

“We just feel the women of our community are, really, the fabric of our community, and really make it what it is from a social perspective and business,” Ms Johnson said.

“We want it to be the forefront of the national recognition of women in our community.”

Ms Johnson said the sculpture would be a tribute to all women of their community past, present and future who had made a contribution to the community through their generosity and spirit.

“One thing that keeps coming up time and time again is the generosity of the women of Penola towards each other through the generations and to the community, so we wanted to pay tribute in that way,” she said.

The sculpture will be created by Adelaide-based artist and sculptor Gerry McMahon, who specialises in Corten steel and has created a range of public art.

The group must raise $39,375 for the sculpture, inclusive of some grants which they will apply for.

They partnered with Stand Like Stone Foundation to ensure donations above $2 were tax-deductible and Bendigo Bank contributed a $5000 grant as the first donor.

“It’s lovely to have that community support from the beginning,” Ms Johnson said.

Those wanting to pay tribute to another woman or group of women in the community can donate $1000 or more and those who donate $2000 or above will be acknowledged as a major benefactor.

These people will be recognised with a plaque near the sculpture and Ms Johnson hoped people would see the art as a positive contribution to the community.

“We have worked really hard to get to this point of being able to bring it to fruition and we really appreciate the community support and hope that people will support it,” she said.

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