Close-up of (found) hula hoop, synthetic material 77cm diameter, 1.2cm wide, with 8 intervals of 2.5cm white Primatape, placement on Honey Myrtle tree, laredo 009, verge hill / Bunbury Western Australia 2023


Every now and then, I’ll pick up an object abandoned on the street. Two years ago, outside the fence at St Patrick’s Cathedral, a red hula hoop attracted me by its dimensions, dimmed colour and scratched surface. And so this 3D circle continued its history - being swirled around my hips (just like when I was 8 years old) but mostly leaning against a wall in my studio - until I reckoned the time had come for it to be self-balanced horizontally, between the branches of two trees, as laredo 009.

The nearby ‘garden island’ has charmed me for 4 years, mainly because I’ve become acquainted with most of the 47-year-old large shrubs / small trees. Two adjacent ones, selected for this intervention, are a study in contrasts: medicinal / native ‘Honey Myrtle’ [or Mindiyet in the Noongar language of SW Western Australia] with its pink delicate pom-pom flowers, and poisonous / imported cerise-petalled “Calypso” Oleander. As it happened, on the day of laredo 009, 14 October 2023, there was “…a national referendum here on systemic aboriginal presence in governance..." 
Stephen Jenkinson, The Lost Letter: Orphan Wisdom, e-newsletter, 2 November 2023


So, what about the 8 spaces, incorporated with tape, into the singular hula hoop? Well, they felt aesthetically logical, provided tonal contrast for photographing / documenting the intervention, and also reminded me of the Buddhist method for attaining the end of suffering via the Noble Eightfold Path.

laredo 009’s statement gives another, more lyrical, interpretation.

Intervention images: laredo 009

Intervention statement: laredo 009





(partial view of intervention) E: 70 metal wine bottle caps 2.8cm x 1.8cm diameter, spaced +/- evenly in a sinuous line approximately 1500cm in length, laredo 008, footpath in Irwin Reserve / Bunbury 2023


Hiking the fluid path along the crest of the Irwin Reserve – with its panoramic views – reminds me of the title of one of Bob Dylan’s songs from ’67, “All Along The Watchtower.” Now too, as it was back then, there’s a seemingly endless war. But as Jimi Hendrix observed, "When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace." By being elevated on this path, I’m psychically elated, yet always keeping watch of the peripheral landscape, above and beyond.


For laredo 008, it seems natural to honour the Reserve’s path by temporarily marking several metres along its length in the form of multiple, +/- evenly spaced, cylinders which are aqua – Latin for ‘water’ – and, by design, match the colour of the external cylindrical pipes at Aqwest’s adjacent site where aquifer water becomes purified.


Intervention images: laredo 008

Intervention statement: laredo 008




(detail with artist's foot on sandstone perimeter wall) white Schmincke pastel; diagonal line 475cm; site footprint 400 x 250cm; view; laredo 007, back yard patio/ Bunbury 2023


“There’s no place like home,” says Dorothy - in The Wizard of Oz – and laredo 007 certainly verified this by taking place at my villa-esque home on the russet brick patio.


The site’s attraction came about quite unexpectedly by perceiving the dimensions of the floorplan, the patio, along with the brick pavers, had +/- the same ratio as the golden rectangle. I discovered a correlation like this had a term: apophenia, meaning “the human tendency to perceive meaningful patterns within random data.”* And so, I affirmed “peace + blessings” to the unknown yet astute architect of this 47-year-old scene in Oz where I happen to live.

* Patina Lee, The Importance of Golden Ratio in Contemporary Architecture



Intervention images: laredo 007
Intervention statement: laredo 007



Peter Schmidt and Brian Eno, London, ca. 1977, photo by Rita Saarikko


There are moments, including some that feel eternal, before a glimmer - nevermind the rare but merciful appearance of a lit runway - when something different needs to appear so the work can change. But ah yes, in-between is often a time of uncertainty mixed with a craving for a clear concept, another scale, an unpredictable yet oh-so-right medium, or dare I say, a ‘divine intervention’ - like creative footwear - to metaphorically cross the dark desert, leap over the edge of a plateau, and land - somewhere else - perfectly… on cat’s feet.

Yoko Ono’s book, Grapefruit, written in 1964 with its “poetic, playful, counter intuitive and mind-expanding texts,” is an engaging ‘oracle.’ I recently came across Oblique Strategies, adding it as well to my left-field repertoire when travelling through the territory of lateral thinking. It’s a method from 1975 devised by musician / composer/ artist Brian Eno and artist Peter Schmidt that was "initially published as a set of 100 cards containing a single provocative prompt.”

“…the card is trusted even if its appropriateness is quite unclear. They are not final, as new ideas will present themselves, and others will become self-evident."

Each of the Oblique Strategies is brief so, instead of purchasing the deck of cards, they can freely be written on small pieces of paper and kept together in a paper bag until “one of those moments” inevitably happens. The difference for me now is that the work has the possibility to be more experimental and the process navigated with a seemingly random yet synchronous poise.

Additional links/updates:

1. The original list of Oblique Strategies (via Matt Rickard)
2. In 1996, Brian Eno rewrote and illustrated the Oblique Strategies, publishing them in English + 5 more languages

3. In 2013, Guy Horton came up with a revised list of the Oblique Strategies for architects





laredo 006 partial view (NW); twenty-one lengths of white recycled cotton rag strips; each 240cm x 3cm; laredo 006, handrail on a staircase / Upper Esplanade, Bunbury 2023


Many times over the past 3 years, COOL (Paul, Chief of Operations for laredo) and I have walked along the Upper Esplanade in Bunbury / Western Australia - mainly for its elevated view of an unvarying horizontal line that lies between the sky and the ever-variational Indian Ocean. Part way along the path, there’s a curving staircase: a convenient shortcut to the beach.


The staircase is rustic, coarsely made of pine logs and planks, and literally so grounded that it always invites a fleet-footed passage along its length. I’m not sure why this happens, but maybe by contrast we remember our bodies are, after all, atomic light.

In retrospect, it seems inevitable - as a kind of a gift-wrapped present in return - for laredo 006 to intervene for an hour, so the site itself could experience something like lightness, spontaneous vitality, and temporality.



Intervention images
Intervention statement


laredo 005 (NW view): partial view of two lengths of double-layered, woven fibreglass tape; 5cm x 500cm and 5cm x 750cm; laredo 005, abandoned caravan park / Holywell Street, Bunbury 2022

Exploring a vacant lot holds the surprise of possibilities. To me, as a 9-year-old, this meant roaming around suburban Vancouver/ Canada – often with my brother and our dog, Fluffy – to actively check out perimeters and contents. Anything unusual would hold our attention: a bounty of wizened apples, fragments of a bees-nest, miscellanies from a demolition, or simply something indefinable in the air.


Fast forward to another continent, decades later. Since moving to Bunbury/ Australia 3 years ago, an abandoned caravan park next to the Indian Ocean has been an inexplicable attraction. Over repeat visits, a temporary intervention near the sole architectural remnant – a zig-zag sandstone retaining wall – seemed inevitable. After experimenting with visibility/ scale/ material, white fibreglass tape became the intermediary. Two different lengths, matching the wall’s ‘zigs,’ were dense enough to lay on the ground yet lightweight to slightly flutter.

Lasting one hour, including photo documentation, on an early morning in springtime, nothing really remains of laredo 005 except the memories of contextualising this special site with attentive recollection and a symbolic act.



Intervention images: laredo 005
Intervention statement: laredo 005  



laredo 004 (NW view): 
two timber and particleboard T-shaped beams; each (overall) 130cm x 4cm x 15cm; laredo 004, restored Arrol Gantry Electric Crane / Jetty Road, Bunbury 2022; image by Paul MacGillivary


The laredo series happily resumed last week with 004. Two slim white T-beams, found on the streets of Melbourne, were balanced on opposite steel girders of a restored gantry crane in Bunbury / Western Australia. This intervention looked like an equal sign except the alignment was a bit asymmetrical. True to form, it lasted for a few minutes… and with enviable aplomb!


Taking cues from laredo 001, “Art seems to be a physical condensation expanded by metaphysically editing - yet uniting - the past and the future.” Evidence of a simultaneous ‘attemptation’ existed in the present via 004.


Intervention images: laredo 004
Intervention statement: laredo 004


For a recent video of Transport WA's jetty + crane revitalisation project click here




A surprise invitation zinged across my desk last month on 21st May. Luz Amparo @ Alfa Gallery in Miami selected my work via Instagram + this very website (!), and thought it would be be a wonderful addition to their roster of artists. 

The gallery's aesthetic was in alignment and Alfa's presence on Artsy completed the allure. My only hesitation was that I do site-specific/-generated solo installations - rather than production of numerous pieces - but that reaction was, obvious in retrospect, superceded by "Mmmmm OH YES! Let's give it a whirl!"

For a peek...