Bringing a laugh to Gladstone

By Rachel Hardy

Bringing a laugh to Gladstone

The handmade giant laughing kookaburra made it’s way to Gladstone this weekend, stopping at McDonald’s Memorial Park, Headspace, CC Fitness Addicts and CQ University.

The big bird was built by local Townsville artist, Farvardin Daliri while he was stuck in Brisbane during the COVID lockdown and stands at eight-and-half metres from the tail to the beak, and four-and-half metres tall.

The kookaburra was constructed using steel round bars that are rounded and put together and locked. Then on top of the steel bars, which are light enough to travel, Farvardin put natural materials like bamboo skins which were treated and painted. The lower beak hangs with a motor that pulls a shaft up and down, with a sound effect that is also built-in, allowing the kookaburra to laugh.

Farvardin created the kookaburra for the Townsville Cultural Festival which he founded and now is the executive director of. This isn’t Farvardin’s first sculpture, creating many others of the years, including a giant koala, Jolly Swagman, Slim Dusty and other icons.

Farvardin said the main motivation for building the Giant Kookaburra was to have the last laugh over COVID-19, “Kookaburras laugh and that makes us laugh”. Alongside the Giant Kookaburra Farvardin also had laughing workshops along the road, so he could get everyone laughing around it and make them feel better.