INTERLOOP, by artist Chris Fox, hovers above the York Street escalators of Sydney’s heritage-listed Wynyard railway station, a major hub in Sydney’s metropolitan rail network. It’s tumbling, looping form and reuse of the 1930s OTIS escalator treads provides a dynamic and potent signifier of Sydney’s past while embracing the future. It is a major landmark for Sydney and for Transport for NSW, who commissioned the installation and has been enthusiastically embraced by the public and commuters alike.
INTERLOOP was installed in December 2017 as part of a $130 million renewal and redevelopment program. Taking 6 months to design and engineer, INTERLOOP took 12 weeks to fabricate with over a kilometre of welding, before an intensive 48-hour installation period. The vast twisting accordion-shaped sculpture reconfigures the heritage escalators into a stitched form. Suspended between two ends of the building, INTERLOOP measures more than fifty metres in length, weighs over five tonnes, and weaves in 244 wooden treads and four combs from the original escalators.
Whilst paying homage to the past, it also, simultaneously, looks forward to the future. First installed in 1931, the historic timber-escalators served Sydney's commuters for over eight decades and held a sense of time, journeys, and travel before they were removed in 2017. INTERLOOP resembles, in part, the original escalators whilst creating an otherworldly space above people’s heads. In experiencing the installation, people are often stationary on an escalator whilst also travelling, allowing for a moment of pause that occurs mid-motion. The sculpture resonates with people in this state, referencing all those journeys that have passed and are now interlooping back. INTERLOOPprovides an important legacy, helping to maintain and celebrate the historic identity of the city, while also looking to its future.
Chris Fox Interloop 2017 Commissioned by: Novo Rail Program Alliance for Transport for NSW Studio Chris Fox Pty Ltd Project Team: Computational and Fabrication Modelling: AR-MA Engineering: Structure Consulting Engineers and BollingerGrohmann Engineers Fabrication: Lumark Pty Ltd Installation: NASS Projects Pty Ltd Architect: COX Architecture Art Strategy: Cultural Capital PR: Articulate Thank you: Tina Salama, Michael Fox, Tony Ho, Rob McGowan, Sascha Bohnenberger, Mark Webb, Paul Sloper, Fergal Talty, Tony Scott, Stacy Raymond, Guillaume Barnes, Harry Partridge, Amanda Jelicich-Kane, Remo Vallance, Edward Horne, Rae Begley, David Varga, Clarissa Sebag-Montefiore Lighting: ERCO and Lighting Control: Automated Photos: Josh Raymond and Chris Fox