By Melissa Sheil
THE anonymous artist claiming responsibility for giant nests mysteriously popping up around Kalamunda has released the final piece in the collection with a much smaller nest appearing in the Zig Zag Cultural Centre last week.
Nest one, the last of eight, was discovered by staff on Thursday morning among Mundaring residents’ Una and Russell Bell’s Seasons exhibition.
The nest is about 3cm in diameter, encased in a perspex square attached to a polished branch, resting on a tall white plinth.
The nest itself appears to be a real birds nest and, oddly, has the nozzle of an aerosol can tucked inside like an egg.
Mrs Bell received a call last Friday from gallery staff informing her the final nest had been discovered in the middle of her exhibition – rather than feeling upstaged, she said she was thrilled that “nest man” found their exhibition compatible for his work.
“I think he liked our exhibition and decided the final nest would fit in nicely amongst our paintings of trees and birds and flowers,” she said.
“We’re delighted he chose us and we feel honoured to host it.
“People were accusing us of putting it in – my husband and I were flattered that they thought we could’ve hauled the huge nests in but we’re both older and this definitely wasn’t anything to do with us.
“There has already been people wandering in to look at the nest and they stay to have a look around at our work so the extra traffic is brilliant.”
The heavy plinth the nest sits on was also brought in from outside the gallery, suspected to have been brought in along with the nest, from an emergency exit door nearby.
The artist, who is conversing with Echo News via his Instagram account, @where_is_nest_1, said nest one was the most beautiful of all his nests.
“Nest one is the nest everyone finds in their garden, it’s showing off the real artists – the birds,” he said.
“It was left until last because I had to make sure people were paying attention and would appreciate the bird’s work.”
Though the artist has not disclosed the overall meaning of the nest saga, it is obvious that much planning and careful detail has gone into it.
“Everything about this body of work has been intentional,” he said.
“If you draw a line on a map starting with nest five and ending with nest two, you end up at the gallery – the only nest that is not along that line is nest four which is titled abandoned for this reason.
“Hiding in plain sight is a skill.”
The City has stated they were not involved in the sculpture series but intend to keep all pieces where they are.
Some of the most prominent are located outside the gallery, in the middle of Stirk Park Lake, in the Coles underground carpark and in the Town Square Hall.
The artist said the final placement in an official gallery was significant.
“We value art differently on its placement.
“People might think this is street art or contemporary art but what this really is, is the art of deception.”
Though Mayor Margaret Thomas does not condone installing art in public or private property without permission, she said the City encourages the creativity behind the series and is herself a fan.
“The local arts and culture sector is very strong and the City has been a long-time supporter and advocate for the local arts community,” she said.
“We’re so lucky to have such talented artists in Kalamunda.”
The artist stated nest one is a gift to the City but reminds us to appreciate things when you have them.
“Without art we have nothing, but nothing is forever.”