Fuel Flowers is an ephemeral work that interacts readily with various sites by expressing different stages in the production and continuing growth cycle of the flowers. Each site represents different stages in the imaginative history of the work, from its initial test planting to its eventual outbreak as a horticultural pest.
Fuel Flowers is an installation of roadside guide-posts planted close together and layered in rows to simulate a field of futuristic, luminescent flowers. The title suggests that this genetically modified crop is harvested primarily for the making of oil for fuel. The work comments on the continued proliferation of greenhouse emissions as well as the increasing possibility of a serious global oil shortage, suggesting a future where the search for an alternative fuel has come to fruition.
How was the space first identified and who was contacted to secure it?
The initial planting of Fuel Flowers was planned as part of the Footprints Project, supported by Mount Alexander Shire, and required a site within the Shire to be chosen. Newstead Racecourse is one of the most historically iconic and prominent sites in the town of Newstead and was therefore considered early as one of the most suitable. Newstead Racecourse is managed by a committee of volunteers, who were contacted, and a presentation was made during one of their monthly meetings in order to secure the site.
What was required to secure the space?
A small donation to the Racecourse (approx $50) and a signed agreement for hire including our assurance that the site would be treated with appropriate respect and returned to the original condition, i.e. divots replaced, signs removed, etc.
What needed to be provided by you as hirer or user of the space?
A signed agreement for hire including our assurance that the site would be treated with appropriate respect and returned to the original condition.
What were the costs?
The guideposts themselves cost approx $11 each. 150 posts were purchased ($1,650 in total)
What were the resources available to you?
The Footprints Project supplied a $2,000 grant for the work, supported by Mount Alexander Shire Council.
Who helped you to fit it out?
Friends and family helped to install the work over 3 days. Main helpers included Melissa Proposch and Andrew Shirres – both fellow artists – and Neil Boyack.
What were/are the obstacles?
Few obstacles were encountered during the initial installation, other than the rock-hard ground after a long period of drought in the region.
What were/are the risks?
Very few risks involved other than tired muscles and the possibility of sheep knocking over the posts (this didn’t occur).