Harrie Fasher’s monumental metal horses stand ready at the top of a rise. Behind them the Yass Valley stretches out, grey cloud across the horizon, The Last Charge has found another worthy home.
Made to commemorate the centenary of the the charge of the 4th Light Horse Brigade at Beersheba in the Israeli desert on October 31, 1917, Fasher first exhibited the work at the 2017 Sculpture by the Sea.
And now it takes pride of place in Sculpture in the Paddock, to be held in the grounds of Shaw Vineyard Estate, in Murrumbateman from September 22 to October 7.
First conceived seven years ago Sculpture in the Paddock started as a way to showcase local sculptors in a small yard near a local gallery.
The late artist Kim Nelson recognised it could be a little more and in 2013 he moved the exhibit to the National Trust’s Cooma Cottage, where he had been the manager for 11 years.
When Nelson died in 2015 the Yass Valley community realised they would need to band together to keep his legacy alive.
Chairman of Sculpture in the Paddock Duncan Waugh looks more like a farmer than someone involved in the art world. Work boots, a dog at his heels, he says he painted landscapes long ago, but now renovates houses as a creative outlet.
He’s passionate about making art accessible, and what better way to do that than plonk it in the middle of a 50-acre paddock.
“We want people to experience this,” he says, waving a long arm towards the horizon.
“It’s a beautiful place we live in and it’s a beautiful way to experience art, walking around, through the sculptures.”
Coincidentally, it was Sculpture by the Sea that inspired Waugh to think about art in a different way.
“I moved up to Sydney and I was living in Tamarama and I woke up one morning and looked out the window and there was this life-sized elephant made of televisions.
“Our goal with Sculpture in the Paddock is to see the joy and satisfaction on people’s faces that I got when I walked out that morning and saw those works.”
Thirty-six artists feature in Sculpture in the Paddock including internationally acclaimed Australian masters Rosemary Madigan and Michael Le Grand.
Madigan, 91, is considered Australia’s finest non-indigenous stone and wood carver. Her work is heavily influenced by her time in 1950s Europe, developing her technique with the great Henry Moore and studying Picasso, Modigliano and Matisse.
Canberra’s Michael Le Grand, whose outstanding sculptures have graced the Australian landscapes from cities to the countryside, showcases his steel work.
Ron Robertson-Swann, Peter Lundberg, Akira Kamada, Sasha Reid, Ayako Saito, Suzie Bleach and Andy Townsend and Robert Barnstone are some of the other artists to feature.
Sculpture in the Paddock will be opened by the NSW Governor David Hurley on September 20 and run over the three weekends until October 7, sculptureinthepaddock.com.au