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Public Statues and Sculpture Association

Victor Cusack (b. 1937)

Australian sculptor, painter, founder and engineer. Born in Sydney, Australia, he studied painting as a youth under William Dargie and other members of the Royal Art Society of New South Wales, and did not turn his attention to sculpture until 1983, after acquiring a technical grounding from the New Zealand sculptor Peter Sedcole. A series of increasingly ambitious government commissions led him to establish the Fineart Bronze Foundry Pty Ltd, which not only cast his own work but that of other sculptors, and which was also equipped for the production of carillon bells. His public commissions include First Fleet, a scale replica of the sailing ship Sirius mounted in a 1.8-metre bronze ring (Ku-Ring-Gai, Sydney; copy erected in Portsmouth 1991), and memorials to the botanist, Joseph Banks; the first Governor of New South Wales, Arthur Phillip (both in Sydney); and Governor John Hunter, The Shore, Leith, Edinburgh. Outstripping all his other works in its scale and complexity, however, is Man, Time and the Environment, an eight-metre-high, water-powered kinetic sculpture in bronze, glass and stainless steel incorporating three historic clock mechanisms, a seventeen-note carillon and a central pendulum, all mounted on a rotating barge in the centre of a pool in a pedestrian mall in Hornsby, New South Wales. This was one of the last works produced by Cusack before closing his foundry in 1993, since when he has concentrated on painting.

Bibliography: The Artworks of Victor Cusack – artist, sculptor, author, poet; R. McKenzie, Public Sculpture of Edinburgh (2 vols), Liverpool, 2018, vol. 2, pp. 402–04, 512; ‘Hornsby Water Clock’, Wikipedia.

Ray McKenzie 2018