When developing the revitalisation program for the Turbot Street Underpass, it was important that all works aligned with the previously commissioned sculpture, Freshwater Lens by Judy Watson. Installed in 2010 as part of Brisbane City Council’s Small Spaces public art program, Watson’s work humanised the area by changing the sense of scale and perspective, softening the dominant lines of the built environment and signifying the history of the space.
Delvene Cockatoo-Collins worked with Watson, to ensure the public mural currently being painted on the soffit complimented Freshwater Lens. Collins’ An Afternoon Low Tide was inspired by the theme ‘Current and Continuity’ it speaks to freshwater meeting saltwater. At low tide the freshwater is cool and flows out to the saltwater, passing by mangroves and swamp mahogany. While at high tide, the summer warm water is mixed with the cooler freshwater. Patterns of water are incorporated into the design as is small uneven boxes to indicate bubbles in the water as well as Delvene’s grandmother’s handwriting.
Watson’s Freshwater Lens, is a suspended sculpture referencing the freshwater lens, a body of fresh water that pools beneath coral atolls and sand islands. The fresh water floats atop the salty seawater, its weight pushing out into a lens shape.
Together these two pieces of work create a vibrant and beautiful area within the Turbot Street Underpass.