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18 May 2018

As the sister-state to Sichuan province in China, Victoria has been invited to submit designs for public sculptures for a new eco-park that will encircle Sichuan’s capital city of Chengdu.

Working in partnership with McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery, two leading Victorian artists – Robert Owen and Sanne Mestrom – have been selected to create proposals for sculptures.

The Chengdu Government is constructing a green space circling the city, including a large ring-shaped public eco-park, where sculptures from Chengdu's sister cities and states will be permanently exhibited.

As part of the first stage of the project, the Chengdu Government plans to install 20 art pieces and has confirmed the participation of cities across the USA, Canada, Latin America, Korea, and Europe.

Owen travelled to Chengdu as a guest of the city in April 2018 to visit the site and undertake research on the project. As Mestrom was unable to travel to Chengdu, Robert has been sharing his knowledge and experiences with her back at home.

Given its expertise in the field of public art, McClelland Sculpture Park and Gallery will continue to work with Owen and Mestrom to develop their proposals.

McClelland Sculpture Park holds one of the largest collections of over 100 permanent outdoor sculptures, responsible for the largest national survey of public sculpture from 2003-2014. The organisation is also highly experienced in commissioning, with 14 sculptures planned over the next 25 years for the Peninsula Link freeway.

Owen and Mestrom’s proposals will be submitted to the Chengdu Government by 31 August 2018 with discussions to follow regarding final execution.

The unveiling of completed works is scheduled to take place in Chengdu’s new eco-park in late November 2018.