Spatial Art

Image courtesy of Sam Hartnet as part of the exhibition "From where she was standing" St Paul St, Auckland, New Zealand, 2016.

Image courtesy of Sam Hartnet as part of the exhibition “From where she was standing” St Paul St, Auckland, New Zealand, 2016.

RM Surveys partners with international artist to deliver unique artisan showpiece.

New Zealand based artist “Maddie Leach spent two months in Mandurah in early 2014 and her residency was hosted by the City of Mandurah. On a cultural tour organised by the city she was introduced to the Pinjarra massacre site, its contested narratives and the ongoing impasse surrounding its naming and memorialisation”.

Part of the Pinjarra site is a large boulder which stands as a memorial to the 1834 massacre – a violent encounter between white settlers and the indigenous Noongar people of the Peel Region, and remains unknown to many West Australians.

As part of her project titled 28th October 2834 Maddie initially wished to create a real size replica of the memorial boulder in sculptural materials. The first challenge this presented was identifying a way of capturing the features of the boulder in a digital form. In consultation with RM Surveys it was agreed that the best method to capture these features would be through a 3D Laser Scan of the boulder.

Utilising one of our survey grade Leica 3D Laser Scanners in conjunction with high resolution photography we were able to provide Maddie with full colour, georeferenced 3D digital information.

As part of the delivery RM Surveys also proposed a number of alternative deliverables including rendering and HD video output. These additional deliverables, once demonstrated, became a key focus for Maddie and eventually formed a major component of her exhibition.

RM Surveys Technical Manager, Neil Foster, recalls as our client was not only based in New Zealand but also travelling overseas during the period of execution and delivery of the end product, all correspondence was conducted via email. Once Maddie was aware that we could deliver more than just a STL model, she was mesmerised by the alternate deliverables RM Surveys can provide.”

So what was the end product?

RM Surveys delivered a life-like rendered model of the memorial along with a HD MP4 fly through of the memorial slowly orbiting in space.

Through collaboration RM Surveys was able to tailor the video & digital outputs to meet the client’s needs.

By allowing our client to experience more than just the required deliverable, we were able to aid the delivery of a very unique piece of art. In the digital age art is not limited to physical objects such as murals and sculptures. Art can be digital spatial information.” – Neil Foster, Technical Manager, RM Surveys.

“Working with RM Surveys was a really rewarding experience – especially because we were working at distance and all communications were by email. As the project developed, Neil really seemed toget what I was trying to achieve and showed immense patience with the queries I had and the changes that needed to be made as I clarified what I wanted and how to convey that digitally.Maddie Leach, Artist

Further Information

The artwork will be available for viewing at St PAUL ST Gallery in Auckland, New Zealand Feb 19 – March 24 2016, as part of artist Maddie Leach’s exhibition “From where she was standing”.


Artist Maddie Leach;

3D Laser Scanning;


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