With each sculpture Gabatel attempts to find inspiration in the immediate environment but when that fails he doesn’t mind looking elsewhere.
Like the Friends Park sculpture, a huge cypress pine radiating four massive branches, one of which is 9½m tall.
While the sculpture is set in an old Quakers’ cemetery, Gabatel decided to re-create something he had once seen in a documentary of people releasing birds into the air to make a wish.
He turned the four branches into four soaring beings releasing birds – the artwork giving the park and former cemetery a calm and tranquil feel.
“It’s supposed to make you feel good and I think releasing the birds is a good image for a cemetery, I think the piece goes really well in the setting,” Roland says.
Gabatel uses a chainsaw to create the basic shape of his design and then brings in the mallets, chisels and other power tools to add the fine details.