FLOAT project gets launched

FLOAT project gets launched

The FLOAT project was launched at Fisherman’s Landing Jetty in Lake Tyers Beach last Saturday in perfect conditions.

FLOAT is a community-built floating art studio that is a world class hub for artists, writers, musicians and thinkers. The space will offer six week residencies with the expectation that there will be a range of creative outcomes for the Lake
Tyers community.

After nearly three years of learning, designing, fundraising and business planning, the FLOAT vessel is finally (99 per cent) complete.

Aunty Helen Morgan, Aunty Phyllis Andy, Lennie Hayes and Nicky Moffat performed a smoking ceremony with Duka Pepper on didgeridoo. Alice Pepper and Rod Harrison led the young dancers.

Around 150 people strolled to the jetty at Fisherman’s Landing to find out more about the FLOAT project, enjoying the parade of FLOATing threads, which were created by Marlene Rees, and hearing the story of FLOAT from Gary Yelen, Josephine Jakobi, Jack Whadcoat and Sandy Boswell.

The vessel was officially launched by East Gippsland Shire Council deputy mayor, Cr John White.

The opening of the inaugural small vessel (Firkin) exhibition on Saturday evening at the Lake Tyers Beach Hall was a testimony to the way FLOAT is connecting community with nature through art.

The exhibition attracted 75 entries and a pop-up shop of locally made small vessels. The work was brilliant, diverse and expertly installed by Gary Yelen, who is a local artist that has curated galleries and arts project around Lake Tyers with his partner, Andrea Lane, for the past 20 years.

The exhibition was judged by Melbourne-based vessel maker, Vito Bila, Caroline Crunden taking home the $1000 first place prize for her piece, A Blackbird’s Song. Tristan Hennessy was second, while Hayley Bruce rounded out the top three.

The small vessel (Firkin) exhibition remains open at the Lake Tyers Beach Hall daily from 11am to 4pm until 12pm Monday, December 10.

Marlene Rees’ FLOATing threads range of handmade fashion are also still on show, and are available for purchase.

This Friday, Gary Yelen will be on board the FLOAT vessel to talk about art and his life in Lake Tyers. There will be a small display of watercolours he has painted while project managing the completion of the vessel.

PICTURED: Carole Rigler, of Frocksmith, and Marlene Rees, of Floating Threads.