Splendid contribution to festival

Architect Dominic Finlay-Jones and artist Lauren Brincat with the Best Time Ever stairway and sundial.
Architect Dominic Finlay-Jones and artist Lauren Brincat with the Best Time Ever stairway and sundial. Jacklyn Wagner

SPLENDOUR in the Grass may be missing from Byron Bay this year, but one local artist is making sure the festival, now held in Queensland, will retain a little bit of Northern Rivers character.

Dominic Finlay-Jones, an architect from Bangalow, and his collaborator Lauren Brincat, were one of three groups selected last year to have their artistic projects on show at this year’s festival, which kicks off on Friday.

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Festival-goers won’t miss Ms Brincat and Mr Finlay’s project – a 25-metre long and 14-metre high staircase built out of local steel and hardwood materials at a shed on Friday Hut Road.

The staircase, titled The Best Time Ever, is surrounded by 12 letters, symbolising the numbers on a clock face so when the sun hits the staircase it will cast a shadow over a letter and act as a giant sundial.

The eight-tonne work of art took two months to construct, four months to develop, a day to transport using a semi-trailer and crane and eight hours of labour to set up at the festival site at Woodford on the Sunshine Coast hinterland.

Mr Finlay-Jones and Ms Briscat met at the Splendid Arts Lab last year – a Splendour in the Grass initiative run in conjunction with the Lismore Regional Gallery, where 10 artists participate in a two-week workshop.

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