Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley presents 'Immersion'
A Stunning Sculpture Exhibition Curated by Selina Hitches
Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley, the ultra-luxury conservation-based resort in the Greater Blue Mountains in Australia, unveils an extraordinary sculpture exhibition, curated by renowned Australian sculptor, Selina Hitches. ‘Immersion’ is a collection of 54 small and large scale sculptures, set within the private valley and protected World Heritage Area that surrounds Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley, offering guests of the resort the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of art in one of the most beautiful wilderness settings in the world.
Selina has curated leading art installations including the XI FIP World Polo Championship Art Exhibition 2017 in Sydney, and she oversaw the resort’s first sculpture exhibition, ‘Valley Reflections’ in 2018. For the new exhibition, Selena has assembled a large, diverse sculpture collection that connects and interplays with the resort and its natural environment, designed to align with and enhance the tranquil experience of Wolgan Valley.
Located between the Wollemi and Gardens of Stone National Parks in the World Heritage listed Greater Blue Mountains area, two and a half hours’ drive from Sydney, Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley occupies just one per cent of a 7,000-acre wildlife reserve, and is a world-leading example of carbon-neutral conservation and sustainable design. The sculptures on display are created from natural and recycled materials such as Australian hardwood, sandstone, copper and steel, perfectly aligned with the sustainable ethos and focus on conservation that lie at the heart of the resort.
The inspiring and thought-provoking exhibition gives guests a unique glimpse into the astounding creative talents of local artists, with works on show from such leading Australian sculptors as Tobias Bennett, Christopher Diaz, Prince Chiota and Michael Greve. Guests are able to enjoy the exhibition by following the ‘Immersion’ catalogue, which takes them on a journey to reflect and explore art in the calming surrounds. Highlight artworks include:
‘Polo’ by Charles Billich, one of Australia’s most prominent living painters, is an original drawing located outside the Main Homestead. From the Vatican Museum to the White House, the Olympic Museum in Lausanne to His Majesty King George V Tupou Palace in Tonga, the Red Cross Museum in Geneva and numerous university, government, corporate and private collections, Charles Billich has an eclectic and ubiquitous following.
‘Wild Horses’ by Tobias Bennet features a pair steel horses, set against the backdrop of the valley escarpments. The fine form of the horse couples with their wild spirit and for the viewer, time appears to pass slowly as they watch the horses run free.
‘Around Squares’ by Al Phemister consists of five formations of cubes made from circles. This play on geometry, shape and position, invites guests to reflect on the idea that sometimes all is not what it seems.
‘Chess Piece #2’ by Ian Bell is fittingly located at the entrance of the stables and is a horse sculpture carved out of forest red gum wood. Previously standing as a tall tree in Australia that was felled for use as a power pole and has now been recycled and given a new existence in the realm of sculpture, the artwork is a prime example of the sustainable ethos that the resort embraces.
‘Tipping Point’ by Michael Greve is a stunning modernist piece that explores ideas around nature and the ever-changing state of unknown result and timing. The tipping point, as the artist says, is often only realised in retrospect but was visible if only we could see it.
“We are thrilled to introduce ‘Immersion’ to Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley,” said James Wyndham, General Manager of the resort. “Wolgan Valley is a sanctuary of nature, relaxation and reinvigoration, allowing guests to escape from their fast-paced lives and immerse themselves in the world of art amongst some of the most beautiful locations in the valley. We are truly excited to offer this experience this year on an even larger scale, with new artists that will challenge and excite art-lovers.”
Curator Selina Hitches added, “Art is a powerful means of communication, enabling the creator to externalise complex ideas and emotions and engage the audience in a dialogue which I believe can be as powerful, if not more powerful, than spoken and written language. Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley provides the perfect landscape for these artists to externalise their ideas and concepts, with a rich history and spiritual nature. We hope that guests of the resort find in the many exceptional works of our Australian artists, a moment of reflection, reinvigoration and enjoyment.”