Melbourne Daily Photo

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Waltzing Australia

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

The Pathfinder (Aka the Hammer Thrower)

Above: The Pathfinder
Photo taken facing west.
The Pathfinder (aka The Hammer Thrower), is a bronze sculpture created by John Edward Robinson in 1974 and stands proudly in the Queen Victoria Gardens. The hammer held by the figure has been stolen several times and duly returned or replaced by another.

About the artist
John Robinson was born in London on 4 May 1935 and died on 6 April 2007. He was evacuated to Australia as a child during WWII to escape the Blitz. Returning to Australia in 1952, he lived in South Australia until his return to England in 1969, where he devoted himself to sculpture full time. His major commissions include four sculptures for the Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra, Gymnast for the New Olympic Museum, Lausanne, and The Pathfinder and Water Children, now with the City of Melbourne.

Above: Facing east
This shows the garden bed in which The Pathfinder stands.


A bit of trivia
The Pathfinder was initially commissioned by mining giant Conzinc Riotinto (now known as Rio Tinto) which they planned to have on display in their proposed new building, but when it (the building) failed to go ahead, the statue was placed on long-term loan with the City of Melbourne. The Pathfinder was unveiled by Lord Mayor Councillor Whalley in April 1974. Information taken from eMelbourne

Some other works by Robinson
For those interested in art, I have included some of his other works.

Above: Bonds of Friendship
Bronze sculpture, 1979 and is 45 x 25 cm.

Above: Abstraction, sculpture pyramidale
Brass 1983. Stands 91 cm high.
You can find more of Robinson's works here.


Today's Quote: Sculpture and painting have the effect of teaching us manners and abolishing hurry ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

20 comments:

ladyfi said...

Wow - great shot of the Pathfinder. Love the sculpture as it's so full of movement and grace.

Luis Gomez said...

Wonderful pieces!

Cezar and Léia said...

Very impressive this Pathfinder sculpture.It brings different feelings inside my heart, dramatic emotions.Wonderful garden as well!
hugs
Léia

VP said...

The hammer thrower is outstanding, but I don't see the same creativity and skills in the other two objects.
I'm quite sure Emerson would agrre with me...

Autumn Belle @ KDP said...

This is a beautiful garden I'd like to visit one day. The sculptures are great works of art.

Leif Hagen said...

That's a very impressive sculpture - quite an athlete!

Elettra said...

Traduzione da Italiano verso Inglese
Large sculpture of Robinson pity that the vandals are working to destroy or damage the beautiful things in Rome a rogue some time ago is ruined "longboat" Bernini fountain in Piazza di Spagna in 1500.

P.S. photos you've seen posted on my post were taken during my trip to Edinburgh

Evelyn said...

Thanks for the info. I see this sculpture often but didn't know anything about it.

diane said...

It has great balance, shame about the hammer.

B SQUARED said...

He had a wonderful gift.

Davine said...

I love this statue, the artist has got great detail of the Pathfinders muscle definition.

anjoe playhouse said...

A very versatile artist ;-)

Small City Scenes said...

That is quite the sculpture. this work is so different than some of his others.
Beautiful park too. MB

arabesque said...

interesting and creative sculptures. ^0^ but i like the 1st one.
it looks like it's about to catch something.

Johnny said...

Muy delgado este atleta lanzador de martillo. Un momento muy preciso¡¡¡
Saludos

JM said...

Great sense of motion! Also like the Bonds of Friendship.

Andrew said...

I understand that the hammer is removed each afternoon by council staff and replaces the next morning.

Greyscale Territory said...

Extraordinary sense of energy in this sculpture! It really represents some creative inspiration and a wonderful feature in the gardens!

Jacob said...

Maybe it was when the hammer was stolen that he wrote the song, "If I Had A Hammer"? No?

Dramatic sculpture. Beautiful garden.

Enjoyed your comment re: the piano store. In fact, we bought the piano pictured! It's wonderful. Now, if only I could play it! ;-)

Jacob said...

I'm not sure my comment went through so if this is a duplicate, please delete.

Perhaps it was one of those times when the hammer was stolen that the thrower wrote the song, "If I Had A Hammer"? No?

I like the sculpture - very dramatic! And it's a beautiful garden.

Thanks for your comment re the piano...in fact, we bought the piano pictured. Now if I could only learn to play it! ;-)

Melbourne Daily Photo

Hello, I created this blog because Melbourne is my city and I want people to see what a beautiful place it is. So come with me on a journey of discovery as we traverse the dining precincts, the culture, the laneways and hidden gems that make Melbourne marvellous.