northerlySWELL 2023 | Andrew Cullen and Goompi Ugerabah | The Water Python | HELENSVALE | FREE

/ / What's ON | SWELL Sculpture Festival 2023

northerlySWELL 2023

The Water Python by Andrew Cullen & Goompi Ugerabah

Andrew Cullen and Goompi Ugerabah collaborate on a striking public artwork titled “The Water Python”, explores the relationship between nature and urban life. Depicting the captivating Water Python, an Indigenous species from Gold Coast, the sculpture symbolises resilience and adaptability. Crafted from recycled timber, its serpent-like form highlights the topography of the lands, often depicted in creation stories.

Strategically placed, the sculpture prompts viewers to reflect on the coexistence of humans and wildlife, fostering appreciation for biodiversity. By challenging misconceptions about the species, the artworks sparks conversations on conservation and sustainability. Andrew and Goompi’s creation aims to evoke wonder, empathy, and discussions about preserving the delicate balance between nature and urbanisation.

When| Friday 1st to Monday 18th September 
Time| 8.30am – 5.00pm Monday to Friday, and 9.00am – 4.00pm on Saturday. Closed Sunday
Where| Helensvale Library and Cultural Centre Helensvale Plaza, Corner Lindfield Road and, Sir John Overall Dr, Helensvale QLD 4212
Cost| FREE  


In celebration of SWELL Sculpture Festival and the sculpture installment at Helensvale Library and Cultural Centre, please come along for a Python themed storytime.

When | Friday 8th and 15th September
Time | 10.00am – 10.30am
Where | Helensvale Library and Cultural Centre Helensvale Plaza, Corner Lindfield Road and, Sir John Overall Dr, Helensvale QLD 4212
Cost | FREE

northerlySWELL is presented by 
Cr William Owen-Jones, City of Gold Coast Division 2.



Andrew Cullen was born in Monto, Australia. After a childhood spent in many parts of Queensland he studied for a Degree in Visual Arts Teaching. From his first group exhibition in London in 1997 he has had the opportunity to travel widely, living in England, Vietnam, Colombia, Japan and Indonesia. He exhibited paintings and sculptures in each of these countries, with his first solo exhibition being held in Hiroshima, Japan in 2005. Andrew predominantly sculpts in metals and timber and paints most often in oils or spray paint. His first significant Public Art piece, ‘Dune Grass’, was exhibited in the SWELL Sculpture Festival in 2010. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2015 Sculptor’s Society Tony Palmer Award, SWELL Sculpture Festival ‘People’s Choice’ in 2016 and overall winner (2018) in collaboration with Dion Parker. In 2021, he received the Major Prize at the Brunswick Sculpture Walk with a 7.5 M Cockatoo called ‘Crackers’. Currently he is preparing work related to his Master of Fine Arts study at Falmouth University, England.

Goompi meaning possum, is a descendant of the Gurreng Gurreng people in the Bundaberg region of Qld. Born as Stephen Larcombe in 1981 on the Gold Coast, which is tribally known as ‘Kombemerri’ land. Living on the Gold Coast and in Tweed Heads, NSW all his life to date.

Goompi is a world renowned Aboriginal artist and also the song man of world renowned Aboriginal dance troupe Bundjalung Kunjiel. Representing stories via artworks of his birthplace and home on Kombumerri tribal land (Gold Coast) and the neighbouring Minjungbal Tribal land (Tweed Heads) Goompi began to paint at the age of 25, after learning and practicing culture through song and dance in his early teens. The song and dance was taught to him by his teachers and skin fathers (the Walker brothers) who are Nunukal people of Stradbroke Island, Qld.

Goompi was self taught as an artist by understanding different techniques from watching other Aboriginal artists from around Australia. Using dot formations to create imagery of native animals in his area.

IMAGE: Courtesy of the artists