Client: Mairie de La Teste de Buch
Location: La Teste de Buch, France
Completion date: 2022
Artwork budget: $230,000
Mairie de La Teste de Buch
Commissioned as a new landmark artwork for the gateway roundabout to the garden city of La Teste de Buch in Gironde, France, “Amalur Child: Between the Sand and the Sea” sits between dunes and forest, sky and sea. It depicts a timeless, gigantic head, sculpted in glimmering steel and open to the light and air. A head inhabited by forest roots and marine grasses. A head inhabited by the reeds of the dunes and the ocean breeze. An artwork that unites the elements in La Teste de Buch; that greets us and welcomes us into the exquisite beauty of Gironde’s Atlantic coast.
In the words of the artist “The relationship between nature and the people that inhabit her is reflected in their surroundings, and the key to healthy growth is founded in ecological equilibrium. In Gascon and Basque history, ‘Amalur’, the figure of Mother Earth, appears benevolent or implacable, like nature herself. This is why “Amalur child, between the sand and the sea”, represents an infantile head, full of the future, atop a golden spiral. The harmony between human progress and nature. The ideal of a healthy earth, here in La Teste de Buch.”
The goals for this project were to create a gateway artwork for a prominent roundabout that welcomes visitors and tourists to La Teste de Buch, and the incredible natural richness and ecological diversity that surround the city; from the Dune du Pyla and the Atlantic ocean, to forests of pine. Hence, the artwork needed to integrate seamlessly into a transited roadway site that is open to broad horizons of sky, trees and architecture alike. It needed to be stunning, luminous and impactful, and at once preserve the visual transits across the roundabout and through into the city; hence the resulting artwork: an incredible feat of plasticity and organic sculpture. A piece with a powerful image, yet entirely open to the air and light!