Cloud’s return on the horizon
 Baw Baw News   By // 16:24, Saturday 28 September 2013

llava cloud warragul artworkcloud D no border

THE INSTALLATION artwork suspended over Warragul’s Howitt Street in 2007 but removed amid safety concerns may make a small-scale return over laneways around Baw Baw.

Images: by Louise Lavarack. Used with permission.


The Baw Baw Arts and Culture Advisory Committee has been discussing the return of Cloud – a moving cable and aluminium work featuring multi-coloured panels which turn with the wind to show different colours.

It was removed after a number of panels fell onto the road in strong winds.

Council committee representative Mikaela Power told councillors the group was considering splitting the work into smaller pieces for use over laneways.

“There have been various discussions and the council are going to talk to the artist about potentially breaking it up a bit and putting it around the place,” Cr Power said.


“One of the suggestions was a laneway in Drouin.”

The work by award-winning sculpture artist Louise Lavarack cost $130,000 but has spent most of its life in a Baw Baw Shire depot.

Ms Lavarack said she would support bringing Cloud back in a smaller form.

“I would be delighted to see it resurrected in one form or another,” Ms Lavarack told The Warragul Citizen.

Ms Lavarack said “an engineering issue” and strong winds were to blame for panel fittings breaking and the problem was “fixable”.

llava warragul cloud art installation

“It’s a matter of getting structural engineers to examine [the work],” Ms Lavarack said.

“It was an engineering issue and we had some seriously strong winds that year. An enormous number of trees came down.


“It would be easily fixable and adaptable, yes.”

Ms Lavarack said she was yet to be contacted about the work’s resurrection. Update: Ms Lavarack was contacted by the council shortly after this interview took place.

Public and council support for the possible move is yet to be seen. Councillors laughed at the suggestion of the Cloud’s return and Mayor Murray Cook joked about the plan to break up the artwork.

“The Cloud I remember doesn’t need any help breaking up,” Cr Cook said.

But Ms Lavarack said the community responded well to the work.

“One of the best reactions was when we were [just completing] the structure and a guy in a ute pulled up,” she said.

“I though ‘oh no’ but… he said ‘I think it’s fantastic’”

What do you think? Let us know using the comments box below.

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18 responses to “Cloud’s return on the horizon”

  1. J. Grace says:

    They should remain in the Baw Baw Shire depot. Where is council getting the money to re erect this eyesore? More waste by our council CEO. Money could be better spent on infrastructure such as our roads.

  2. Gerard says:

    That looks like it was a beautiful installation, I look forward to seeing the idea used, albeit on a smaller scale.

  3. Simon says:

    I wasn’t in town in 2007 and never got a chance to see this work. I’d love to see it reinstalled somewhere

  4. Ian Honey says:

    There will be no “Silver lining” by resurrecting “Clouds”! It is not art. It is sheet metal. I want to see money spent on art that appeals to the broader community. Pissaro ( not Picasso, Carolyn) was a beautiful impressionist that most people understood. A life like bronze of a dairy farmer would be appreciated.

  5. Catie says:

    Leave it in the depot,it’s safe in there.This will save ratepayers having to pay enormous insurance premiums to cover pedestrians who may have to walk down the laneways. Who will pay the engineers to fix the problem when they couldn’t get it right in the first place.There are far more important projects for council to attend to

  6. Alan says:

    I consider too much ratepayers money has already been wasted on this failed and dangerous concept. Please sell it for scrap metal to recoup some of our rates.

  7. Milton Dawson says:

    I feel Warragul would do well to leave the Cloud where it is .
    It would be nice to have an arborist tend to the two Stryzlecki gumtrees near Hallyburton Grove
    These trees must be well over one hundred years old I remember three of them being large trees when I was a boy seventy six years ago

  8. tony says:

    I cannot believe that the council paid $130,000 for a few bits of tin and wire. Art in some peoples eyes is junk in others. Trying to utilise bits of this art in other places will only come to grief and devalue the original artworks value. Why put bits all over the place just because it is sitting in a depot. Try to sell it for what ever you can get for the original work in its complete form – good luck on getting anyway near its purchase price.
    While on the art subject – what is all this knitted graffiti that is rubbishing our streets appearing all over the place about?

  9. I Brown says:

    I say scrap the cloud, and the clown who made this expensive hunk of junk

  10. Abu Umar says:

    I’m being serious. I don’t know what exactly it is, there’s just something so cool looking about ‘Cloud’ though.
    Reinstall. In a large scale. Just do maintenance work on it.

    Where is Howitt St anyhow? Is that CBD like?
    It wouldn’t make sense to have this in a residential zone…

  11. Monique says:

    This was one of the most pretty and eye catching pieces of Art I have seen around the Baw baw shire. it was so disappointing when it was taken down.

  12. Colin says:

    “Councillors laughed at the suggestion of the Cloud’s return and Mayor Murray Cook joked about the plan to break up the artwork.

    “The Cloud I remember doesn’t need any help breaking up,” Cr Cook said.”

    This council is pretty weird, they can laugh about this public art work and plow ahead with the Neerim Bower which will be heaps worse, spoil the views and ignore just about everything that is written in their own community plan about preserving the special landscape character of the district.

    What’s with art and Baw Baw? it just doesn’t add up. Most people agree that overhead power lines aren’t very attractive, car yards with flags on strings, also ugly, but the same kind of aesthetic for a public art project is OK – time for the Councillors to wake up, I reckon

  13. Sue Acheson says:

    What a fantastic idea! I would love to see the panels used in a new sculpture. As far as I know, the cost wasn’t originally paid by council, so it would be like a new artwork with only installation costs. Well done for the initiative ACAC!


    As a cyclist and drive I would find the cloud panels very useful in covering up potholes that make cycling and driving a hazard on Baw Baws Roads….could then rename the reinstalled art work as ‘Autumn Holes’.

  15. Dave says:

    They could get street names on them and use them for signs around town or maybe patch the roof on the old milk factory before it falls down.

  16. Sue says:

    With so many of us struggling to pay the huge rates we are being charged in the Baw Baw Shire its very irresponsible of the shire to spend OUR money on this after spending so much on it already.
    Ill have a discount on my rates thank you instead!!!!!!

  17. fiona hughes says:

    What an eyesore! but it actually doesn’t matter what majority people think of this so called piece of artwork, the shire will still waste our money. Fix all the pot holes along this road instead, not a quick fix a permanent one.