Lincoln Primary School - Te Moana Sculpture

In 2018 the principal of Lincoln Primary School invited me to help create a large Oamaru stone sculpture that the entire school would collectively carve. The school were developing a whole new school block, and at the entrance is a new library with four large windows, and they had a space dedicated just in front for a feature sculpture.

The principal mentioned that a small team of students would draft the school's design and asked if would I be to guide them through this process. Of course, I was happy to come and teach them and help them plan and design the sculpture.

Once the school chose the design, we then moved into the next stage of how it would all come together. The scale for the sculpture is enormous. Standing at three metres tall, this would be the largest project that I have taken on. First, we needed to make sure that the finished product would be safe and secure, so we sought out the advice of a structural engineer who came up with a fantastic blueprint. The sculpture would not be one block of stone, but instead, it would have to be in three blocks of stone. The stone blocks would connect to a cement base with two large steel rods that went through the first two blocks, and a smaller rod would connect with the middle and top blocks. Then as they are coming together, they would all be secured with epoxy resin. 

We were all set to start the project in December 2018, and all we needed to do was order the stone and get it drilled before we delivered it to the school for carving, when, unfortunately, I broke my hand and wrist in several places which required an operation that didn't happen until around Christmas time. After that, it took a few months to recover fully, so the project was set back until March 2019. Even though it was a nasty break, my wrist and hand healed well, and I was able to teach the students at the school.
Before we had the stone delivered to the school, it needed to have three holes professionally drilled into it for the steel rods. Once they had done that, then we could make finally make a start. 
I worked with the senior students to cut away the excess stone and remove all the large pieces, and for the first week, we were mainly sawing and chiselling away at the rock to create the general shape. Then in the second week, we rasped, filed and shaped the stone, Again many of the students in the school worked on this part.
By the end of two weeks, we were ready for the three blocks of stone to be assembled into one large sculpture. We moved the stone to its final place and called in the guys from Hiab Services to assemble it, and they, along with our project manager Richard Wise did an incredible job. 
The sculpture was in place, and the epoxy had set, but there was still much work to be done to get it to look right, So over the following week, the children shaped and sanded the stone. Finally, we added the school crest, and then the sculpture was sealed.
This project was a team effort, and I could not have done it without everyone involved.
Please view the video below to see how it all came together.

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