It's a community row that has triggered passion on both sides
- art versus a picnic table.
The fate of the table remains uncertain as concerned
residents ask the Mosgiel Taieri Community Board to leave it
Campbell Shaw, of Mosgiel, asked the board at its last
meeting to keep the picnic table on the corner of Gordon and
At the previous board meeting, the board agreed the picnic
table be removed entirely from the site and the sculpture be
The Beech Leaf Stepping Stones sculpture, by German-born
artist Siegfried Koglmeier, was installed in 1996.
Its leaf-shaped concrete paving stones were designed to
reference a nearby beech tree.
However, members of the art community, including the Otago
Sculpture Trust, responded angrily early this year after a
picnic table was installed on the site - under the direction
of the community board - and some paving stones removed.
The board has asked the community for ideas on where to
relocate the table.
Board deputy chairman Mark Willis has been approached by two
organisations with suggestions and another organisation
wanting the table to remain.
Mr Shaw said the picnic table could co-exist with the
sculpture if the missing parts were reinstated.
The picnic table was well used and it staying on site would
not spoil the fallen-beech-leaf sculpture.
''It's people friendly and attractive, a true community
He wanted the community board to poll Mosgiel residents on
the table location and expected most residents would want the
picnic table to remain on site.
Mr Shaw was a volunteer who helped build and install the
table but said he was not speaking on behalf of the volunteer
group, but as a concerned citizen.
Councillor Kate Wilson said the board wanted the missing
sculpture pieces to be reinstated and the picnic table to be
moved, either on or off site, and a decision would be made at
the next board meeting on Tuesday.