LEAVE NO STONE UNTURNED
BABY: Wanaka sculptor Jo Woolley (left) and student Georgie Skeaff
discuss Georgie's Oamaru sculpture inspired by a cactus at the weekend's
air was heavy with Oamaru stone dust at
the Queenstown Art Centre when seven eager students tried their
hand at sculpting under the watchful eye of Wanaka sculptor Jo Woolley.
The two day course held at the weekend was organized by the Queenstown
Art Society and proved popular with both complete beginners and
Woolley provided a vast array of stone working tools and her expertise
to help students achieve their creative vision, coaxing interesting
shapes and forms from the stone.
Woolley began sculpting full-time about a year ago and said the
more she followed her art, the more passionate about her work she
worked as a graphic artist in London for three years, then left
to travel throughout Europe on her motorbike for three months, followed
by nine months backpacking in Asia.
eventually made her way to Australia and then New Zealand, and sculpted
her first piece of work in Oamaru as a wedding gift for her brother.
The piece was unexpectedly bought by Oamaru council and while sculpting
another piece for her brother she thought "Why don't I do this
for a living?" Since then Jo has had work exhibited in San
Francisco, Wanaka and Queenstown, sold numerous pieces to people
throughout the World and designed Arrowtown's new schist signs.
recently submitted a proposal to the Wanaka 20/20 district plan
for a community sculpture inspired by the landscape to be built
in Pembroke Park.
has also entered a concept in the prestigious Sydney initiative
Sculpture by the Sea, which could launch work onto the international
art scene if accepted.
the end of the two-day workshop, the dust finally settled and each
student had at least one finished piece to take home. Ms Woolley
said she had enjoyed watching people explore their creativity in
3D and hoped it would inspire them to follow their dreams.