Striking Aussie natives sparkle in Dulux colours
Photo credit: Peter Bennetts
Cruise the Swan River towards South Perth and you’ll be greeted with an unexpected sight. A giant frilled-neck lizard dominates the landscape at the Mends Street Foreshore. Over 20 metres in length and standing 9.7 metres tall, this dramatic aluminium artwork weighs a whopping 9000 kgs and is matched in scale by its companion, a numbat. Both installations are part of the City of South Perth’s $7.5 million Connect South project, creating a pedestrian-friendly piazza and a lively hub for both locals and visitors.
These native animals are certain to become icons of the region, but their purpose goes beyond their good looks. The origami-style folds in the aluminium splay out to form wide canopies and provide much needed shade and shelter.
Of course, the structures also need protection from the elements. The riverside location prompted project engineers to cite wind, moisture and salt as potential causes of corrosion. Kyle Nesbitt, Technical Sales Representative for Dulux Protective Coatings, recommended a coatings system that provides superior corrosion protection, UV resistance, durability and gloss retention.
Starting with adhesion-promoting Luxepoxy 4 White Primer at 50 microns dry film thickness (DFT), the aluminium was then coated in Duremax GPE at 150 microns DFT to ensure high performance barrier protection. Weathermax HBR in 100 microns DFT created a stunning, glossy finish that will resist stains, scratches and graffiti.
The Weathermax topcoat featured Dulux colours, as specified by the project managers at the City of South Perth. Large components of the artwork were painted offsite by Etch Coatings, so there were storage and transport challenges to overcome. Once assembled in place, the artworks immediately fulfilled the artist’s vision. The canopies cast dramatic shadows across the paving, while the Dulux colours reflected the changing sunlight of the day.
“The sculptures look fantastic,” Kyle enthuses. “This interesting installation has brought the foreshore to life.”
This impressive project is a 2020 Dulux Colour award finalist in the Commercial and Multi Residential Exterior category.