Where art and farm collide
The curious mix of farming, rural and regional life and the world of art holds pride of place at the Wimmera Machinery Field Days.
While countless examples of farm machinery, products, produce and all things agribusiness shout out from the various outdoor and indoor sites, people can’t help but be drawn to a special part of the event – the Wimmera Machinery Field Days Victorian Farm Sculpture Competition exhibition.
The competition, starting from humble origins, has developed into a full-blown and rich artistic extravaganza, prompting the rural community to delve into the curious and subjective world of art.
Old parts, long-forgotten steel, fencing wire and every other conceivable piece of farmland flotsam and jetsam get twisted, welded, painted, manipulated and moulded into pieces of art that can’t help but attract the attention of field days patrons.
The competition has grown from being an idea and a curiosity to serious business.
The sculpture competition at the field days has become a state title with a first prize of $2500 in an overall prize pool of $6000 up for grabs, thanks to ACE Radio being on board as major sponsor.
Not only that, but annual winners of the Victorian Farm Sculpture Competition have the opportunity to enter their sculpture in National Farm Sculpture awards at the Spirit of the Land Festival in Lockhart, New South Wales, each year, where first prize is $10,000.
While the products of practical farm-product engineering glisten under the flutter of promotion business flags nearby, the creations of people exploiting inner artistic whims command just as much attention – such is the cultural mix of the field days.
The Weekly Advertiser and radio stations 3WM and MIXX FM general manager Scott Grambau said ACE Radio was proud to continue its long association in supporting the Victorian Farm Sculpture Competition at the field days.
“The field days is about more than just doing business deals – it’s about people and culture and that is what drives us,” he said.
Field days manager Murray Wilson said ACE Radio had been a key supporter since 2006 and it was pleasing to see its long-term association continue and strengthen.
The Victorian Farm Sculpture Competition traditionally draws about 50 entries from across the region and interstate.
This year features expanded categories, providing budding farm-sculpture creators more chances to win prizes.
CREATIVE: Haven sculptor and regular Wimmera Machinery Field Days Victorian Farm Sculpture Competition entrant Marty Knight with one of his pieces. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER