Photographic sculpture opened on Melba Pathway

A group of community members at the opening of Future's Past, a sculpture in Coldstream.

A three-dimensional, interactive photographic sculpture was today officially unveiled to the Coldstream community.

Photographer James Voller created and installed his artwork, Future’s Past, at the Coldstream Melba Connect Project site – a path soon to connect Melba Estate, the former home of internationally renowned opera singer, Dame Nellie Melba with the Coldstream shopping precincts.

Mr Voller said the work creates the illusion of an early European shelter on the nature strip at the north end of town.

“The work places an image of a hut from the Yarra Valley, prior to Coldstream’s settlement onto the site,” he said.

“The photograph has been printed into glass, cut out and placed onto a steel frame, creating a three- dimensional work.

“The work is interactive, as viewers can walk into the sculpture. The transparency of the work will allow the viewer to look through photographs of the past in order to prompt an examination about what the future relationship between the town and landscape holds.”

A photographic sculpture (featuring two large pieces of glass with an image inside) next to a trail in Coldstream.

Future’s Past in Coldstream, taken from a viewing platform where the two pieces of the sculpture appear to converge.

Ryrie Ward Councillor, Fiona McAllister, said the work, which is now visible from Maroondah Highway, will continue to be an attraction for tourists and residents walking through the town.

“The Coldstream Melba Connect Project will connect two of the main areas in town, giving residents and visitors the opportunity to wander through Coldstream and see more of what it has to offer,” Cr McAllister said.

“Mr Voller’s sculpture is a striking piece of public artwork, one that is sure to catch the attention of visitors and add to the unique experience of coming to the Yarra Valley.

“I’m thrilled that this artwork has been finished, right in time for one of our peak tourist seasons, and I encourage visitors and residents to take a moment to visit the artwork on their way through town.

Mr Voller’s work was selected as part of the Coldstream Public Sculpture Project, where artists were encouraged to submit their vision for sculpture works to line the pathway.

A photographic sculpture (featuring two large pieces of glass with an image inside) next to a trail in Coldstream. This image shows the pieces further apart.

Future’s Past in Coldstream, photographed from the side.

The Coldstream Sculpture Project evolved from the initiative of Coldstream Voice, who approached Boral for funding for the sculpture. The themes for the sculpture emerged from stories and ideas shared by the community as part of the Coldstream Stories project, an arts project funded by Council’s community grants.

Boral Australia provided $50,000 for the community to commission an artist to develop the artwork.

Boral Quarries also provided new crushed rock material which lines the pathway reducing in a significantly reduced cost to Council to establish this asset for the community.

Boral Quarries General Manager of Quarries, Southern Region, Peter Head, said he was delighted that the project had produced such an iconic work of art that local residents could be proud of for years to come.

“The Coldstream Melba Connect Project is a great locally driven initiative and I’m proud to see the final artwork take pride of place on the corner of Maroondah Highway and Melba Highway,” Mr Head said.

A group of community members at the opening of Future's Past, a sculpture in Coldstream.

Community members, representatives from Coldstream Voice, Coldstream Primary School, Boral Quarries, and Council (including Councillor Fiona McAllister) with artist James Voller (right).

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