A towering and majestic sculpture listing the names of all 26,000 Bond University graduates from the past 30 years was unveiled today in homage to the limitless possibilities of education and to mark the beginning of the University’s 30th anniversary celebrations.
The striking stainless-steel sculpture is titled Limitless and lists the names of every student who has graduated from the independent University since it opened 30 years ago, on May 15, 1989.
It took two cranes to install the 6.5-metre-tall structure to sit pride of place underneath the University’s iconic Arch. The ambitious art project is made from polished marine-grade stainless steel and weighs 1.5 tonnes.
Featuring a sand-blasted globe of the world and the names of past students from more than 100 countries, Limitless is the creation of Gold Coast sculptor, Ian Haggerty whose concept was selected by the University after a series of pitches in a design competition.
“My idea for the sculpture was always to demonstrate the limitless possibilities created by education,” Mr Haggerty said.
“I wanted to bring together the global Bond University alumni community, showing there are no limitations to education when it comes to gender, age, race or religion.
“I actually did my own accelerated Master degree in Entrepreneurial Management when I was 57 years old, so to my mind there are no limits to education.”
Mr Haggerty said the sculpture took thousands of hours to complete and was concentrically aligned with Bond University’s existing landmarks, including the Arch building and lake fountain.
He encouraged those wishing to view the sculpture to do so at night as the installation includes special lighting effects designed to highlight key features and shimmer in the surrounding water – also hinting at a ‘secret’ to be found hidden somewhere within the piece.
The Scotland-born sculptor now lives in the Gold Coast suburb of Tallai and his day job is working in business mergers and acquisitions.
Mr Haggerty’s sculptures, which are works of creativity and passion undertaken in his spare time, have been exhibited around the world and also feature in private art collections.
He has sculpted numerous pieces seen on the Gold Coast, including Sea Lion & Pup at Miami’s Don Mcsween Park, while also exhibiting over many years at the Swell Sculpture Festival in Currumbin.
Mr Haggerty worked collaboratively on Limitless with two Burleigh Heads businesses – Atlas Stainless Supplies on the steel fabrication, and Mastercut Technologies on chemically photo-etching the students’ names on the sculpture.
He said he was honoured to be involved in creating a legacy piece for Bond University that would become a talking point and stand the test of time.
“Being made of stainless steel, Limitless really is ‘of the moment’ and I hope it will be a part of the University for centuries to come,” he said.
“Personally, I like to think it will be a focal point at Bond University - a meeting place where people can come together for a coffee and perhaps to take a selfie.
“I’m extremely honoured and privileged to have the opportunity to be involved in Bond’s 30th anniversary celebrations - this is quite an achievement for me.”
Bond University’s Vice Chancellor and President, Tim Brailsford, said Limitless symbolised the University’s global outlook and its ethos of innovation and absolute focus on its students and pride in their achievements.
“Ian Haggerty has encapsulated the limitless potential of our students in an imaginative and most wonderful way – his sculpture is a tribute to every one of our graduates from around the world, and to the spirit of Bond University,” he said.
“All of our students over the past three decades are part of the Bond University story and this sculpture is a perpetual recognition of their journey with Bond.
“Bond’s 30th anniversary is a significant milestone - it has been fantastic to provide a taste of the celebrations ahead with this unveiling, and I look forward to what I am sure will be a very special year.”
From May 13 to 19, Bond University will celebrate its 30th anniversary in style with a full calendar of Homecoming events, including the official opening of the new Health Sciences & Medicine building extension (May 13), Alumni Awards Dinner (May 16), Alumni Leaders Forum (May 17), Family & Friends Festival (May 17), a series of public academic lectures and workshops, and sporting events.
A highlight of the Homecoming calendar will be the 30th Anniversary Gala Ball, which will see more than 1000 former students celebrate alongside staff and the wider Bond community at The Star Gold Coast on Saturday, May 18.
Full details of the 30th anniversary celebrations can be found here.