Phillip Piperides is the man behind the Bee Gees Way Sculpture and other Brisbane creations.

Published 4:19pm 9 October 2018

Phillip Piperides is the man behind the Bee Gees Way Sculpture and other Brisbane creations.
Words by Kylie Knight

From the look on Barry Gibb 's face, Phillip Piperides could tell that he loved the bronze sculpture he made of the rock star and his brothers for the Bee Gees Way opening.

The artist from Brendale, who made Bee Gees sculptures as boys and as grown men, admits he was anxious when for the first time the last remaining Gibb member saw them close up.

“I met him at (the opening of) both stages. At the first stage he was really good, he’s quite a humble man, he congratulated us and so on. But the second stage is probably when he got a little bit closer to shake hands and asked me to unveil it together with him, so that was very nice,” Phillip says.

“I was nervous, very nervous actually, until we unveiled it. He congratulated me right there and the look on his face really said it all.”

For about 30 years, Phillip's worked in his foundry creating sculptures of well-known people such as the rugby league legend Darren Lockyer and former Brisbane Lord Mayor Clem Jones. When Moreton Life visited his workshop he was working on the restoration of a 110-year-old statue that typically resides in Anzac Square, Brisbane.

Phillip's dad was a potter and the now 61-year-old grew up in clay with his hands. It remains his favourite part of the operation.

His sculptures begin in the form of clay before being replicated in wax, rubber, and bronze.

When asked if he had seen a person in the media or encountered in life whom he would like to make a sculpture of, Phillip says it would most likely be one of his art friends.

He and some of his mates who have all known each other for many years are working on a project of creating portraits of each other.

“We’ve all aged a little bit. It’s interesting to see the change,” he says, laughing.

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