Plant forms 1959-60
After service in the Second World War with he Royal Australian Air Force, Parr studied at the Royal Melbourne Technical College. From 1955 to 1957 he worked in Britain as assistant to the great modernist sculptor Henry Moore.
However, it was the example of younger British sculptors including Reg Butler and Lynn Chadwick that influenced the future direction of Parr’s work. Unlike Moore, these artists worked in welded steel. Their spiky, rough-textured compositions were likened to a ‘geometry of fear’ expressive of post-War angst.
Back in Australia in 1957, Parr and several other progressive Melbourne-based sculptors formed the Centre Five Group to advocate for public commissions for local sculptors. As a notable success in this enterprise, Parr’s eerily primordial Plant forms, in welded steel, was originally created for and installed at the Chadstone Shopping Centre.