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This year marks the 21st anniversary of Sculpture by Sea, Bondi, a major free public arts exhibition in Sydney. Since its inception, the event has grown to become the largest annual sculpture event of its kind in the world. Running from October 19 until November 5, 2017, the exhibition, which is staged along the dramatic Bondi to Tamarama coastal walk, expects up to 500,000 visitors over the three-week period, with works from 104 Australian and international artists on display.
Launched in 1997 as a one-day affair, Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi was founded by David Handley, a then corporate living in Prague, taking in the city’s art-scene by night. Allured by the casual nature of al fresco art, Handley hurdled back to Sydney to create Sculpture by the Sea.
With the number of visitors increasing annually, and its international reputation gaining momentum, 2005 saw Handley launch Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe (March 2-9, 2018), a sister expo held on Cottesloe Beach, Perth to meet growing demand.
Although the list of impressive must-see sculptures in this exhibition is endless, one that need not be missed is Marina DeBris’s interactive installation ‘Inconvenience Store’.
The Australian artist, most-known for creating garments from waste that has washed up on shore, has applied her art form to this new installation. ‘Inconvenience Store’ is devised to resemble a standard convenience store – the only difference will be the stock on the shelves: pieces of waste that have floated ashore. And, visitors will even be able to purchase these items. The concept behind this is to encourage visitors to reconsider their relationship waste and its recurring impact on our lives.
Sculpture by the Sea, Bondi will be peppered with activities such as free artist talks in Aqualand each Saturday and Sunday, varying self-guided walks depending on levels of mobility, and free guided Tactile Tours for people with disabilities.
There will also be a range of food and beverage vendors such as Sydney Water Bar (a complimentary fruit-infused water bar), Parkers Juice Bar and Refresh Café.
Complimentary Maxiblock sunscreen will also be available from the catalogue marquees and site office, should the day be a full of sunshine.
Due to its immense popularity, traffic may be heavy getting to and from the exhibition, so plan ahead and leave plenty of time for delays.
Trains from the city run regularly to Bondi Junction and extra buses are available from Bondi Junction to Bondi Beach and Tamarama. Alternatively, the beach is a short three-kilometre walk from Bondi Junction train station.