The Age of Fishes Museum has a novel new exhibit currently on show with its 360 million-year-old fossils – “Pattie” the distinctly present-day fibreglass cow.
“Meet Pattie” is the product of Year 8-10 visual arts, agriculture, timber and photography students at Canowindra High School and she represents a notable triumph – the school is one of 42 selected to take part in this year’s Archibull Prize for primary and secondary schools across NSW, Queensland and Victoria.
The idea of the program is for schools to transform a blank fibreglass cow into an artwork exploring a food or fibre industry – cotton, grain, dairy beef, sheep or wool under a general theme of sustainability — and Canowindra High School’s designated category has been Sheep and Cattle.
With the help of the school’s agriculture and visual arts teachers, the students have dedicated one side of Pattie the cow as beef and the other side as lamb.
“Ag students came up with the concept of a feed bin which holds Canowindra prime lucerne hay,” says the school principal, Neryle Smurthwait in this week’s online school report, “with the sides showing Biodiversity, Crop Rotations and the Watertable.”
Pattie is also pulling a Products cart full of “all the things we get from sheep and cattle. [And] the sides of the cart have the major retail store logos painted on them.”
Ag teacher Owen McLaughlan hails the project as “a fantastic experience for our students, school and local community.”
By Derek Maitland
IMAGE: Pattie’s pride of place among museum’s famed 360 million-year-old fossils