FORGET Cloud Arch. What George St really needs in its airspace is a beautiful big rhino. So say Sydney artist couple Gillie and Marc Schattner, who this week wrote to Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore offering to make Rhino Arch and give it to the city. Despite the $6 million they estimate it would cost to make the work, the ecowarriors are prepared to do it free of charge.
They argue their rhino would be a destination artwork with greater global impact than Junya Ishigami’s Cloud Arch, which will cost the city at least $11.3 million. “We’re huge admirers of (Ishigami), but we thought it would be an opportunity to do something a bit more memorable,” Marc Schattner said.
The couple is passionate about northern white rhinos. At Sculpture by the Sea last year, their huge rhino sculpture helped raise awareness of the species’ imminent extinction. There are only three northern whites left on Earth, living in Kenya under armed guard, and the Schattners have met them. “This sculpture would really put Sydney on the map as a progressive city that cares about saving the environment,” the Schattners said in their letter to the Lord Mayor.
“New York City has already come on board. In January 2018 we’ll be installing the tallest rhino sculpture on earth in the heart of Manhattan. “The intention is to educate the public. To us, it’s priceless.” Asked to comment on the offer, a City of Sydney spokesman said Cloud Arch had been chosen from designs submitted by artists from around the world.