Social sculpture finds first home on Whangārei’s Town Basin loop walk
Bascule Park on Whangārei’s Town Basin Loop has become home to the world’s first GiraGlob, an innovative spherical structure that is a piece of furniture, a form of shelter and a work of art all in one.
Tenacity and resilience are two words that come to mind when you hear the story of how Waipu-based designer/concept developer Warwick Bell and multimedia artist and designer Suza Schiele have turned their GiraGlob concept from just an idea on paper into reality.
“The designing, testing and prototyping has been years in the making and we are very happy to see it come to life. There is a place for an object such as GiraGlob in the community, they sit as social sculpture and there’s much potential for local artists/designers to activate them, to create functional art for public-spaces all over the globe”. ~ Warwick
The installation of the first GiraGlob in Bascule Park on The Loop in Whangarei’s Town Basin comes after 5 years of design, development and prototyping. This would have been a complex project to manage at the best of times, let alone with the extra challenges of a world-wide pandemic. Cast aluminium moulds needed to be developed and tested in China before they could be shipped to New Zealand for production with Auckland-based Galloway International.
“Having David involved has been hugely beneficial for us. He’s helped us navigate the complexities of figuring out where we can apply for funding and which organisations we need to talk to as we take the GiraGlob from concept to market.” ~ Warwick
The installation of the first commercial GiraGlob is a milestone worth celebrating and the perfect example of how surrounding your business with a strong support network is so important. Hinu TeHau, from Creative Northland and our Growth Advisor David Templeton, have been with Warwick and Suza as advisors and cheerleaders from early on. David was also able to connect Warwick with an opportunity to raise funds for the project through a Callaghan Innovation Research and Development Grant. Support from Whangārei District Council gave confidence while completing the prototyping along with their agreeing to the first public space installation.
Well known for producing innovative functional event and art pieces, Warwick’s former company was the design and engineering expertise behind the award-winning Whangarei Canopy Bridge along with iconic event structures as the Giant Rugby Ball for Tourism NZ.
“Seeing Northland-based businesses invest in innovation and take a chance on a design they know will work is great for the Northland economy. At Northland Inc we are proud to have been involved in the process of supporting Warwick and Suza to take the GiraGlob to market. ” says David.