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Riverbank Promenade 2005
Adelaide 

The wooden Jeannie bench was designed in 2000 as a prototype in a competition held by Arts SA for public seating on a terrace above Adelaide’s Torrens Lake. The brief was that the seating be both functional and sculptural.

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Riverbank Promenade 2005
Adelaide 

The wooden Jeannie bench was designed in 2000 as a prototype in a competition held by Arts SA for public seating on a terrace above Adelaide’s Torrens Lake. The brief was that the seating be both functional and sculptural. In response Khai Liew developed what appears to be an audaciously simple structure consisting of just four elements, a seat and a back interlocked with winged supports canted out in tension, inspired by the image of a bird coming in to land on the river. The project took four years to be realised and saw the bench’s material change as an anti-vandal measure. As now installed on the Riverbank Promenade the Jeannie benches are made of a stainless steel substructure overlaid with compressed fibre cement sheeting, clad with etched glass mosaic tiles. They sit beneath metal slatted shade structures designed by Liew in association with HASSELL architects. A teak version of the bench has been installed in the outer foyer of Southern Ocean Lodge, Kangaroo Island and the metal and glass mosaic prototype is in the collection of the Art Gallery of South Australia.

© Peter Ward, April 2010