A standout new feature on the road that winds down into Stillwater is causing drivers to pull over and get out to take a closer look.
The large sculpture of two geckos was carved from the stump of a pine tree on the berm outside a private Stillwater residence by Auckland carver Phil Bonham.
Phil says he was commissioned to do the sculpture by the owners of the property who had to cut down the pine. They chose him after seeing his Seat of Life sculpture at Sanders Reserve in Paremoremo.
The work took Phil about nine days but was completed in short bursts over several months with the final oiling completed last week.
Phil researched geckos to get their sinuous forms just right, while upscaling the size and chunkiness substantially. Then he got to work with a chainsaw, later using hand tools for the finer details.
Originally from the North Shore, Phil studied art in Hawaii and works in a range of media as well as teaching art. His work is in several public and private collections but it’s the first time he has carved anything on a roadside. He says he is happy with how it’s turned out and the amount of attention it’s drawing from passing drivers.