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Sculptors dodged IRA bombs to create Hills haven

By Ieva Tomsons

FOR THE past 50 years, Gidgegannup sculptors Joan Walsh-Smith and Charlie Smith (right) have travelled the world creating large-scale public art projects many of which are now part of Perth’s urban landscape.

They grew up in Ireland’s oldest city Waterford, both were Catholic but their families were poles apart.

When they were 17 they met at Waterford School of Art and Design where Joan was training to be an art teacher and Charlie was completing art courses to qualify as an architect.

“The boys from architects’ offices would come three days a week to study and it took me a while to adjust to their disruptive behaviour after a strict boarding school education with nuns,” said Joan.

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