Outback MagazineOutback Magazine


Carving a legendCarving a legend

Carving mythological Aboriginal figures and solid outback characters sculptor Kevin Banting has made a successful conversion from a building background to an artistic future on his small family farm near Maryborough, Queensland.

Story Patty Stevenson photos

Back when time began, mythical Queensland Aboriginal tribesman Wook-koo loved to roam and explore the rainforest along the banks of the Mary River, near Maryborough north of Brisbane. Folklore says this tribal land was rich in bush tucker, flowers, animals and birds. These days, most of the rainforest has gone, but the Mary River still flows deep and wide, sandwiched by rich, fertile land in an area now known as the Woocoo Shire.

Carving a legendHigh on the banks of the river, sculptor Kevin Banting has paid homage to the Aboriginal founders of the area. Kevin has carved an ironbark sculpture of mythical tribesman Wook-koo, which stands two-and-a-half metres tall, and radiates the thousands of years of pride, strength and endurance of the Wook-koo legend and local Aboriginal tribe, the Butchulla people.

The Ringer, an earlier sculpture of Kevin’s, won every competition it was entered in, including the prestigious Dame Mary Durak Craft Award, held annually in Brisbane’s Queensland Museum. A life-sized head and shoulders carving of a stockman sculpted in Australian beech, The Ringer was sold for $9000 to the Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame in Longreach. Story end

Full story OUTBACK Issue 35 June/July 2004

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