THE RATTLE TREE

This project was funded under Wellbeing SA’s Strengthening Community Wellbeing after Bushfires Grant Program.

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“The Rattle Tree” installation was inspired and brought to life by the 
imaginations of Sarah Strong-Law and Matt Nettheim.

Over three weeks in April 2022 the Kangaroo Island (Karta) community, friends and family of Sarah Strong-Law, and all the kids from the local school came to the Kangaroo Island Sculpture Trail to weave their own singing contribution to “The Rattle Tree”. Each would be taught a three-ply rope twist and then left on their own to weave. Some of the quicker rope spinners had time to make two. The artist Basketboy amongst them, beautiful spiral weave rattles materialised in his hands, ten a day, more than one hundred rattles to sing in the upper branches of this wonderful old Blackthorn - Basaria spinosa on this coastline’s many windy days.

Basketboy (Matt Nettheim) is an award-winning Kangaroo Island based basket weaver who works exclusively with locally sourced plants. Deep plant relationships and respectful harvesting and are a key component of Basketboy's ethos as a weaver, as time is taken to get to know the plants, offerings made, and permission given prior to any plants being used.

For "The Rattle Tree" project, the Traditional Spiral Weave Rattles made by Basketboy are produced with locally sourced Spiny Rush-Junctus. Each rattle contains a small local shell, a rock and a brass bell. 

The Rope Rattles made by visitors and the community are made with 
locally sourced Bulrush, adorned with a feather and a brass bell.

We're lucky enough to have another of Matt's sculptures on the Kangaroo Island Sculpture Trail, Remembering Dick & Clayton.