Newspaper article Fraser Coast Chronicle (Hervey Bay, Australia)

Sculptures Taking Shape; Meet the Artistic Couple Making Moulds for Memorial

Newspaper article Fraser Coast Chronicle (Hervey Bay, Australia)

Sculptures Taking Shape; Meet the Artistic Couple Making Moulds for Memorial

Article excerpt

Byline: nancy bates

IN A workshop in Coolum, Mark Snell and partner Jane Bailey are moulding clay that will become a series of poignant bronze sculptures in Maryborough's Gallipoli to Armistice memorial.

The mood is intense. Both profess to a deep sense of awareness that they are translating something of the soul of Australia into works designed to leave a lasting impression on visitors learning about the original Anzacs.

Jane sits back from a replica of a soldier's helmet, dented by bullet or shrapnel, that will form part of a sculpture she is creating for the Pozieres arbour.

"There's something different about working in bronze," she muses. "It's nice to do something meaningful that's going to be around for a long, long time. And with this it's also emotional because it's about such an important part of our history."

Mark, known on the Fraser Coast for his remarkable Light Horse sculpture in Freedom Park, Pialba, echoes her words.

He and Jane have created sculptures in fibreglass, concrete and less durable materials in their career as artists with movies and theme parks but he is finding a high level of satisfaction in his Maryborough commission.

"This is real. This is meaningful," he says, looking at a soldier sculpture emerging from the clay.

As with the Light Horse statue, he is absorbed with the detail.

He confers regularly with renowned expert John Meyers of the Maryborough Military and Colonial Museum.

The tiniest marks on buttons must be correct.

With another full-size statue by Rhyl Hinwood, creator of the Mary Poppins statue in Maryborough, the three sculptures emerging from the Coolum workshop will build a unique experience in the Pozieres walk.

Jane and Mark met about 15 years ago at Movieworld creating sets and props for films.

Jane had set out to become an architect but left in her fourth year of study to become a freelance artist.

She worked for studios on the Gold Coast and for Disney in Japan before joining Movie World and meeting Mark, who holds a Bachelor of Design Studies from Griffith University.

"We were young and could handle the long hours," says Mark. …

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