This commission for the UTS Law School builds upon two previous sculptural installations by artist Richard Goodwin that, in the tradition of Arte Povera, use clothing as a metaphor for the historical body – the Corvette Memorial (Garden Island, 1995) in which he used sailor’s uniforms from WWII and a site specific installation at the Orange Regional Gallery (Orange, 1992) in which he used local residents’ clothing.

The site-specific installation features vestments donated by some of Australia’s most distinguished barristers and judges. The wigs and silks, preserved in nitrogen gas, represent the head and the body, articulating the role played by the intellect and the emotions in the ‘play of the law’.

Articles 26 and 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights are cast into the adjacent concrete. Former Dean of Law, Associate Professor David Barker, noted that these articles held special significance: “In a time when Australia is going through a period of change, when the decisions of the High Court are being challenged on political grounds and the status of the Judiciary is being questioned, it is important for us to remember that these rights which reflect the values of the community must be respected.”