Cassini artwork outside Karralyka building

The sculpture Cassini by US artist Charles Perry forms the starting point for the Maroondah Public Art Collection, installed at Karralyka in 1978.

Conceived to be displayed in unity with the architectural design of the Karralyka building, the work was one of a number of art and architectural collaborations between Harry Seidler and Charles Perry.

Perry also created the adjoining sculpture for Seidler’s Shell Headquarters on Flinders Street.

Original plans for the work indicate that the artist sent instructions to Australia, where the work was fabricated in Brunswick, Melbourne and installed according to the artist’s specifications.

Both the architect Harry Seidler and the artist Charles Perry share a common role as early proponents for the teachings of the Bauhaus (1919 - 1933). As many of the Bauhaus teachers and artists fled Germany at the start of World War 2 to arrive in teaching positions in the US both Seidler and Perry studied under influential Bauhaus teachers: Seidler studying under Walter Gropius and Marcel Breuer at Harvard and Perry studying under Josef Albers at Black Mountain College and completing vacation work with Alvar Aalto in Boston. Albers encouraged in Perry a sense of play with materials in order to discover their essential nature - the elegant folds of the Cassini sculpture are reminiscent of everyday items such as elastic bands.

The sculpture is one of a series of iterations of the Cassini work: other examples of the work exist in different scales in wood, marble and gold pendants.

Similarly scaled Cassini works in steel can be found in different colours in Northbrook Court shopping centre in Illinois and on the Beacon River Harbour in East Moline, Illinois.

Cassini artwork outside Karralyka building
Charles Perry, Cassini, 1978, welded steel, paint.


Karralyka forecourt, Wilson Street, Ringwood East 3134  View map

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