MEPA is a community association which aims to protect the local environment, and to promote awareness, understanding and enjoyment of it through education, discussion and community activities. The association was formed some years ago by committed and active members of the community who were concerned by the environmental decline they saw around them. It continues to be active in the community, with regular meetings, talks and organized activities.
A major concern to many on the Range is the invasion of feral plants and animals into the surrounding bushland and much of MEPA's activity focusses on weeding, with feral animal eradication undertaken primarily by State and Local Government authorities. This focus on weeds involves hands-on practical eradication, input into discussion at Local and State Government levels on appropriate land use and land management, and requests to Local, State and Federal funding bodies for assistance in this ongoing battle.
For further information on MEPA, its meetings and activities, or just advice on what to plant, what not to plant and how to control weeds email MEPA at: firstname.lastname@example.org or go directly to the MEPA Website.
Vic Calthorpe (who manages the Tip) won first prize of $1,000 in Painting (watercolour any subject) for his "The Road to Wivenhoe".
Yvonne Mills-Stanley won $1,000 with first prize for Landscape - "The meeting of land and sea - Moreton Bay", and a $300 merit prize for a Work on Paper - "Premonition".
Ann O'Connor won a merit prize ($500) for her Sculpture "Upwardly mobile Venus" and first of $1,000 in Other Medium Work for a sterling silver neckpiece.
In the Heritage of Pine Rivers category, Cleopatra Ganis won a merit prize of $300 for her "Glorious Rainforest".
Finally the Pine Rivers Art Prize of $5,000 was won by Graham Radcliffe for his abstract marble sculpture "Alpine Reverie".
Mt Glorious sculpture garden
Over the past two years, Graham and Margit Radcliffe have been realizing their vision of a sculpture garden on the Mount Glorious mountain. Sculptures created by Graham during many years in Italy are set in the forest. Their "Vision" was to make a sculpture garden where people could come and experience the beauty of sculpture and nature and go away uplifted. There is an appropriate setting for meditation. Although the works have not been consciously chosen for particular parts of the garden, they are not placed at random and are unlikely to be moved. Colour in the garden is accented by azaleas, tropical rhododendrons and other plants. Graham started with sandstone, but never worked with marble until he went to Italy.
The first sculpture to be seen is "The Winged Messenger of Love" made of Turkish marble. It is an angel of love, the Holy Spirit; love as the carrier of peace. It is a very special piece for Graham in gratitude for the gifts he has been given in his lifetime.
"The Last Embrace" (Mountain News cover) is set in the concentration camp in Dachau. In his book "The Cosmic Messenger" (Boolarong, Brisbane, 1993) Graham asks: "Have you ever put yourself in the position of the participants in this mammoth tragedy? Can you imagine the terror of being arrested at gun point, and led away to arrive by some means at such a place? And why? Because you are a Jew, because the wrong blood flowed in your veins? Or perhaps the wrong thoughts reside in your mind? The thought of the horrific trauma of removal from one's family, wife, husband or loved ones led me to conceive the idea for the sculpture of the last embrace. The last contact however fleeting, the last touch of your beloved's face. The last encounter with their eyes and being. Whether that happened in the physical sense or not, I am sure it happened in the spiritual sense as they knew in those next minutes they would be dead. These are the emotions that I tried to realize with this sculpture. I have made it starkly simple. An abstract, symbolic, anonymous man and a woman in the form of a cross. The grace and beauty of woman stated by her flowing hair, and the strength of man protecting with an outstretched arm. Will you stand in front of the sculpture and put yourself in their place. Instantly you will realize the value of life itself. The preciousness of it. But whether half a century ago, or today in more peaceful times, the essence of the Last Embrace is the same. Have we lived and loved to our fullest capacity? The last embrace must be without regret." A pair of flooded gums can be seen in the background of this sculpture.
"Phoenix Germania" celebrates the opening of the Berlin Wall in 1989. It uses a woman as a symbol with hair flowing down; with a Phoenix flame at the bottom. So one hopes that the woman with her softness will engender a softer approach in the German approach to life. "In the Hands of the Mother" (see below) shows the large protective hands protecting the child with love. Graham is able to tune in to an emotion, and show it in stone. Beyond, the view extends to Moreton Bay.
Margit says it is so lovely to have these sculptures in the forest where they have their space, and are not cramped as in the gallery. They are so precious where they are, and peaceful. The "Green Cathedral" right on the top of Mt Glorious has seats. Margit sits visitors down an tells them about the Vision, and that he only creates sculptures that talk about hope, forgiveness, peace and love, and not about the destruction that goes on in mankind. Graham is one that pulls mankind after him and is only appreciated after a while, perhaps really appreciated only after death.
Margit says that Graham's sculptures are created in three ways. The most precious are those that fall out of heaven; others follow models made of clay; or Graham can take a piece of marble and know what's in it. Sometimes a sculpture is abandoned when it does not gel. It may be set aside and returned to later.
Graham was a painter before he
a sculptor. He painted in Rabaul, Papua New Guinea. The Iatmul
Sepik region are renowned for their sculpture, and infants born
umbilical cords around their necks are destined to become
it is no coincidence that at Graham's birth in Brisbane he was
by the cord. He met Margit in Cape Tribulation, North
living in Italy they bought their present property at auction -
day with only two bidders. The original pieces in the garden are
sale, but can be recreated.
In a world where high achievement, perfection and needing qualifications to do anything is so dominant and all pervasive in the workforce, people need somewhere to be where they can be accepted at their learning level of experience. From a point of acceptance, their creativity is able to blossom. Ann welcomes and supports anyone who has a desire to sing in the Choir regardless of each person's musical background. Given how technical music is and the demands on a music student to be so exact, Ann is brave and firm in her conviction that all of us are capable of expressing something beautiful of the human spirit through voice. It's amazing how coupled with a good voice warm-up and through listening to Ann, to yourself and to the others, the four-part harmonies take form. Frankie Armstrong once stated in an interview for 'Community Arts Network News' - I'm not into high standards, I'm into deep standards - what people create is always beautiful. This statement captures the essence of Ann's philosophy.
Other performing arts groups on the mountain include the Mountain
Artz group and the Mountain Theatre Company.
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