Hilton Adelaide Commission

12 October 2020

Steven Bellosguardo, South Australian emerging sculpture artist and University of South Australia graduate, has unveiled a 3D contemporary site-specific sculpture Henri, Yvonne and the Golden Dove in the foyer of the Hilton Adelaide. 

Steven’s work joins Tom Borgas’ piece Gold Topography, which was installed behind the Hilton Adelaide service desk in early 2018. Spearheaded by Hilton Adelaide in partnership with the Helpmann Academy, this program is an opportunity for an emerging artist to gain valuable experience in developing public art and site-specific commissions, while also providing exposure for their creative practice.

Steven fuses contemporary techniques with a traditional approach to making sculpture, with his sculpture both abstract and figurative in nature and resembling two reclining figures constructed of painted steel shapes.

Speaking about the opportunity, Steven said, “The Hilton Commission has been a great opportunity to expand my practice, through professionally working with a client to creating a work that is both new and exciting to my practice.”

“The commission required a wall-mounted sculptural artwork, and these parameters created a new thread in my practice, investigating the intersection between painting and sculpture. This has led to learning new skills and techniques within my practice, creating the potential and desire to create further wall-mounted sculptures in the future. I have also learnt to project manage and liaise with multiple parties throughout the process, creating a strong foundation for other commissioned projects in the future.”

Following in the footsteps of his famous grandfather Dr Bert Flugelman (designer of The Spheres AKA The Mall’s Balls), Steven’s work is already part of the city with his bright sculpture Donkaay taking up residence on the corner of Morphett and Hindley Street, and an installation at the Adelaide Airport titled Flight Paths.

Mr Rupert Hallam, General Manager of the Hilton Adelaide said “We have always been a great supporter of the local arts community and this will be our second commission piece for the Lobby.  We are delighted to team up with our partner, the Helpmann Academy, who nurture local artists and provide them support and mentorship – it is a community partnership that we are very proud.

“Hilton is a global company but Adelaide is our home and we are committed to ensuring that our programs give back to South Australia” said Mr Hallam.

Jane MacFarlane, Helpmann Academy Chief Executive Officer said, “The Hilton Adelaide Emerging Artist Commission is a rare and incredibly beneficial opportunity for an emerging artist to have their work exposed to a wider audience through a South Australian institution. We are thrilled that the Hilton Adelaide is once again championing the next generation of artistic talent in our state through this program.”

About the work

La Colombe d’Or (The Golden Dove) opened its doors in 1920 as a small inn of 3 rooms in Saint-Paul de Vence, France. The owners Paul and Baptistine Roux shared a deep passion for the arts, often allowing artists to exchange paintings for a stay or a few meals. The south of France became a “free zone” for a variety of thinkers and artists post WWI through to the 1960s. La Colombe d’Or became a meeting place for many modern masters including Braque, Matisse, Chagall, Miro, Picasso, Calder, Cesar, and many more. The hoteliers became somewhat patrons as well as close friends with many of the artist guests, and their artworks still to this day adorn the hotel’s walls.

Henri, Yvonne and the Golden Dove pays tribute to the relationship between hotels and the arts, and their ongoing support of artists through commissioning and collecting new works. Sixteen abstract shapes create a sculptural painting, constructed of painted steel portraying two figures basking on a lazy summer’s day. The collage of flowing forms extends off the wall revealing itself, only to disappear as you move through the foyer.

Image: Steven Bellosguardo’s work Henri, Yvonne and the Golden Dove in the foyer of the Hilton Adelaide. Photo by Reuben Gore.

Video by Reuben Gore, Ivy Entertainment. With thanks to installation assistant, Kate Bohunnis.