Dol­phins’ men­tal health splash

North Coast Times - - FRONT PAGE -

ARTIST Paul Drok and six helpers spent count­less hours painstak­ingly cre­at­ing the in­tri­cate de­sign for the dol­phin sculp­ture on dis­play in For­rest Place.

Known as Con­nec­tions, the highly vis­i­ble art­work is one of 36 dol­phins placed through­out Perth for The Big Splash, an in­ter­ac­tive dis­play to raise men­tal health aware­ness.

Drok, from Ned­lands, said Con­nec­tions grew from a tac­tile art project at a deaf/blind camp held at Wood­man Point in 2016.

His daugh­ter Kimberley (29), who is pro­foundly deaf with im­paired vi­sion, also con­trib­uted to the de­sign.

“Many of the deaf/blind camp’s par­tic­i­pants put to­gether hexag­o­nal, di­a­mond and tri­an­gu­lar-shaped wooden blocks and pro­duced a range of tac­tile, fig­u­ra­tive and ab­stract de­signs,” he said.

“Kimberley also de­signed and in­sisted her com­pan­ion dog Vi­o­let, for de­sign pur­poses

now a Sea Dog, be in­cluded in the dol­phin de­sign.

“Fish, an­i­mals, stars, plants and shapes were ei­ther drawn on heavy lined hexag­o­nal graph pa­per, or made up with wooden blocks for the dol­phin de­sign.”

Many busi­nesses, in­clud­ing Com­mu­nity

News, pro­vided spon­sor­ship to help bring the sculp­tures to the streets and walk­ways of Perth.

Drok said he spent 25 hours draw­ing the de­sign on to the sculp­ture.

“Many more hours went into it; we had four weeks to de­liver. By be­ing in­clu­sive we all win,” he said.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d478786

One of the dol­phin stat­ues in Con­nec­tions.

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