Sunday, 14 September 2014

Public Art in Perth 7 - Burswood Park

These wonderful statues are all  located in Burswood Park, a 3,5km long park on the south bank of the Swan River in the suburb of Burswood, 5 min. away from the CBD, with lots of walking and cycling trails, picnic spots, playground, lakes, birdlife and of course the Crown Casino and Hotel.
A heritage trail provides sculptures representing local sporting history.
There are walking tours of the park departing from the Visitor Information centre, at 11,50am daily.

Map from Burswood Park site

The Smith sculptors  (Charles Smith and Joan Walsh-Smith) whose statues are represented all over Perth (Kings Park, Fremantle, etc) are the sculptors of all of these statues in Burswood Park.

Citizen of the year Swan Fountain

This magnificent 10 metre high bronze sculpture in the "Citizen of Year Lake". 
The  statue of the 5 swans emerging from their nest, was commissioned in 1988, and represent each of the 5 categories of the Citizen of the Year Award. Surrounding the lake, you can see the plaques with the engraved names of the people that won each year's category.

The fountain rises 6 metres and circulates about 2000 litres of water per minute. 
This photo taken in December 2007, on a day out visiting Burswood Park, when my parents visited from Portugal and my younger sister, brother in law and 2 nephews visited from South Africa.

In this photo taken in 2010 when my middle sister visited from Portugal, shows the whole lake with the 5 Swans and a Cygnet statue. Burswood hotel and Casino in the background.

Black Swan

Another statue by the Smith duo, unveiled in 1996, this giant bronze black swan (State bird of Western Australia), seems to be taking flight. In the background you can see the city of Perth on the other side of the Swan River.

 Swan Shell 

Designed to reflect a swan in flight, this elegant statue is next to the Citizen of the Year Swan fountain statue. It's a popular venue for outdoor concerts and a popular spot for wedding photos.

Henry Camfield - First Pioneer Settler

Henry Camfield migrated from England to the Swan River Colony in 1829 with two servants and their families, and was granted 1000 acres, which he named after him home town in Kent - Burrswood.

My sister who visited in 2010 leans against Henry Camfield, and Burswood Casino in the background


These bronze statues depict children playing Hopscotch in their 19th century Sunday clothes. Next to the statues is another area for the kids to play hopscotch as well.
Unveiled in 1994 to coincide with the "Year of the Family".

Keeping the Flame Alight

Depicting two of Western Australia's sporting legends - the athletes Herb Elliot and Shirley Strickland. They face each other and hold the Olympic torch in the air. 
The sculpture also depicts the Olympic torch relay for the Sydney Olympics (2000) which went through the town of Victoria Park (next to Burswood) in July 2000. This statue was unveiled in April 2001.

Me in front of the statue in 2010

There are a few more statues in Burswood Park, but these are probably the most iconic.
Which was your favourite?

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Public Art in Perth 6 - Fremantle

The statues are in this post are in the harbour city of Fremantle, a 20min drive from Perth's centre.
I have previously written about Fremantle, a very interesting and quirky "suburb".

Bon Scott - Fishing Boat Harbour 

I'm sure you've heard of the Australian rock band AC/DC? 
Ronald Belford Scott, or Bon Scott as the band's vocalist was known, was born in Scotland, but came to Fremantle with his parents. 
He was a troubled young man, who died in London in 1980, at the age of 33. His ashes are in the Fremantle Cemetery. 
A bronze statue of Bon was unveiled near the harbour in October 2008, sculpted by Greg James.

Fishermen's Monument -  Fisherman's Wharf

In 2002, Claude Basile, Ross Merlino and Guido Micalizzi, the sons of three pioneering fishermen from Fremantle, proposed the construction of a monument to the local fishermen who contributed so much to the Western Australian economy.
In 2005, the two life-sized bronze statues of fishermen were unveiled and dedicated to the fishermen who once departed from the Port of Fremantle to fish.
The honour wall next to the statues constitutes of 12 timber columns with 608 names written in bronze plaques, taken from pre-1947 fishing licence records.
The sculptors are - Jon Tarry and Greg James (who also did the Bon Scott statue).

Can you spot the Bon Scott statue to the left?

The honour wall with fishermen's names (photo from net)

Welcome Walls - Maritime Museum, Victoria Quay

A major memorial to the contribution of migrants to the State of Western Australia, is located just outside the Maritime Museum. Unveiled in December 2004 as part of the 175th anniversary celebrations of WA. 
The Italian fishermen and their families are also represented here among the thousands of other names. 
Family members of immigrants that arrived through Fremantle were invited to  have their migrant heritage (name,  year of arrival and name of ship) recorded on these walls.

Stories from immigrants on the Welcome Walls

Child Migrant - Maritime Museum, Victoria Quay

This life sized bronze memorial of a boy and girl carrying their worldly possession by Joan Walsh-Smith and Charles Smith (I have mentioned these amazing sculptors in my other Public Art posts), is dedicated to the nearly 3000 British and Maltese unaccompanied children who were shipped out of their homeland to brave an unknown future in Western Australia over a period of 50 years.

Vasco da Gama Memorial - Marine Terrace, Esplanade Reserve

Commemorating the Portuguese navigator (1469-1525) and commander of the first ships to sail from Europe to India. He was also the Governor of  Portuguese India with the title of Viceroy.
It's lovely that the Portuguese community in Perth have a memorial to one of their own!

Pietro Giacomo Porcelli -  corner William and Adelaide Street (Kings Square)

This Italian sculptor was born in Biscegli, Bari, and migrated to Australia with his family.
He studied at the New South Wales Academy of Art, having later returned to Naples to study sculpture.
He created the life-sized bust of Sir John Forrest, that stands at the main entrance to Parliament House, as well as the statue of explorer Alexander Forrest (Sir John's brother) that stands at the entrance to the Supreme Court Gardens and many others scattered throughout Australia.

A friend and founder of the Porcelli Memorial Fund - Giuseppe Rispoli - proposed that a statue to Pietro Porcelli be commissioned by the Italian Community in honour of his memory and creativity. 
The bronze statue by Greg James, depicts the artist at work shaping a clay bust, the empty stool means the subject matter has already left.

Southern Crossing (or Man and Dingo) - Victoria Quay (Ferry Terminal)

Sculpted by Tony Jones and Ben Jones, and unveiled in 2002, this statue consists of 3 parts - the gangway, a life sized man with a suitcase in one hand an a model of a ship in the other and a dingo - representing the sense of adventure and fear that any immigrant would feel on disembarking from a ship in Fremantle to start a new life in Australia.
The dingo doesn't look too welcoming either...

Sir Hughie Idwal Edwards -

Air Comodore Sir Hughie Edwards, the son of Welsh immigrants, was raised and educated around Fremantle.
His bravery, skill and leadership during the war, led him to receive the Victoria Cross and Distinguished Flying Cross. He was Governor of Western Australia during 1974-75 and was knighted, retiring due to ill health.

Dog Statue

I couldn't find anything about this last one - a metal statue of a small dog in Fremantle, but I thought it was cute.
Once I saw it with a bowl of water in front of him, making it look like a real dog!

Hope you have enjoyed the statues in Fremantle, which was your favourite?

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Public Art in Perth 5 - Kings Park

In the wonderful Kings Park Botanic Gardens, close to the city's central business district, there are quite a few statues, my favourite being the statue of a Mother and child - The Pioneer Women's memorial. I will only post a couple of them, as there are quite a few, especially related to War memorials.

Pioneer Women's Memorial

This bronze 2,75mt high statue sits on stepping stones in the middle of a lake, with a couple more stepping stones scattered around it and surrounded by water fountains that sprout every 3 minutes..
It was sculpted by Scottish born Margaret Priest and inaugurated in 1968. At the time it was reported to be the biggest statue in Australia.
It represents a Mother with her child stepping forth to meet her destiny.

Here you can see some tiny ducklings and their Mother on one of the stepping stones

The statue in the middle of the lake surrounded by fountains

Cenotaph - War Memorial

Also know as Perth War Memorial, it was designed by Sir Joseph John Talbot Hobbs, who was a General and architect and was unveiled in 1929. 
Built of granite with an 18mt obelisk, it is set on a podium over a crypt overlooking the city of Perth and Kings Park.
This war memorial honours those that died during World War I, and is one of many memorials in Kings Park, that honour the soldiers that fought in the various wars.
On Anzac's day on 25th April each year, the War veterans and families gather around this monument for a dawn ceremony.


In the recreation area at Kings Park -  Synergy Park Land  there is an island with a fort for small kids, and a couple of pre-historic animals scattered around, one of them being this Muttaburrasaurus, who was an Australian herbivorous dinosaur.

During one of her visits to Perth, my daughter sitting on top of the dinosaur


Phytosaur , a crocodile like extinct reptile, by sculptor Travis Tischer in 2010, is another pre-historic animal in Synergy Park Land.


A feBullockornis, one of the heaviest birds on earth, found in Australia 15 million years ago, are another feature in the Synergy Park Land.

Rotary Wishing Well

The wishing well was unveiled in 1949, by Dr G.H. Wright of Rotary. Located on Fraser Avenue, the main avenue of Kings Park, near the Cenotaph.
It was refurbished in 2008 with a new wrought iron scroll around it, created by Antonio Battistessa. 
In the first year the Perth Rotary Club raised £632 in small coins, donated by the public of Perth, with newlyweds being the biggest contributors.

These delicate metal structures in a pond in Kings Park, blend very well with the nature around. I haven't been able to find anything about them, but I still wanted to display them as I think they are very pretty.

Hope you had a great weekend!
Tomorrow is the start of Spring in Australia and Kings Park will be alive with wildflowers with Spring Festival running from the 1st of September until the 30th of September.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Public Art in Perth 4

After my post on the Queen Concert in Perth, I'm back with some more interesting sculptures around our city.

Grow your own - Forrest Chase (CBD)

One of the most eye-catching sculptures in Perth must surely be the "Green Cactus", by Perth artist James Angus, who won the honour of designing this statue in an International competition with  202 other contestants.
"Grow your own" refers to the organic farming movement of the early 20th Century when Modernist sculpture began.
The art work which cost $1 million, was at first not too well accepted by the public due to it's cost, but I think slowly it's becoming a loved landmark in the newly renovated Forrest Chase area, and a playful addition to the square.
The statue which is 6,5mt high, 11 mt long and 3mt wide, appears to change shape depending on where you are in relation to it.


The Strike (Miners) - Perth Mint, 310 Hay Street, East Perth

The statue of the first two prospectors to hit gold in  September 1892, near the town of Coolgardie - William Ford and Arthur Bayley.
This statue at the entrance to the Perth Mint, which was established in 1899 to deal with the wealth that gold brought to the State of Western Australia.
The bronze statue is life sized and were sculpted in 1991 by Perth sculptor Greg James.

Perth Gold Mint

Foosteps in Time - St Martin's Centre, 40/50 Hay Street, Perth

Unveiled in 2004, and commemorating the 175th Anniversary of Western Australia, this group of statues symbolize the business people that built the thriving Perth CBD from the Dutch explorers in 1697 to the Millenium man in 2004.
The sculptors are the talented duo Joan Walsh-Smith and Charles Smith (Also the sculptors of the Kangaroo statues in Stirling Gardens and the HMAS Sydney Memorial in Geraldton and Percy Button statue.

Dutch Explorer
Discovery of Gold
Millenium Man

People in the city - Central Park, Corner Hay and William Street

Sculpted by Anne Neil in 1999, (who was also the sculptor of the Pen Nibs and the Going Home kangaroos) a group of men, women and children walk to the city.

Tree of Life - Hay Street

This stylised metal tree, by West Australian sculptor Rod Laws, is right next to Wesley Church on Hay Street in the CBD. It's 1 metre tall, and represents the prayers of peace from the children of CHOGM (Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting) which was held in Perth in October 2011. Each leaf has the name of the country whose representative visited the conference.

Arch - Corner James and Lake Street, Northbridge

By sculpor Lorenna Grant, inaugurated in 2010, this 8mt high arch painted in a black and white harlequin pattern, sits in the middle of a roundabout in the Northbridge Piazza, a public space where outdoor movies and concerts are held.

A few more to follow in the next post, hope you enjoyed some of the serious, wacky and wonderful statues of Perth!

Monday, 25 August 2014

Queen at Perth Arena

I was thrilled to be able to get tickets to attend the only Perth concert of  "Queen" and Adam Lambert, at Perth Arena on Friday 22nd.
I say thrilled because I only bought the tickets the night before!
On my way home from work I heard on the radio about their concert, and as soon as I got home I went online and managed to get two tickets from the very few still available.
Luckily we even got tickets on the second tier, which were great, right in front  the stage.

Full house!
The control centre just below our second floor seats
 A few "Freddy" lookalikes popped up in the audience before the start of the show drawing applause from the crowd.
The Arena, which seats just over 15,000 thousand people was packed. 
I would hate if I had to climb right to the top row on the fourth floor, as looking from below they looked as if those balconies were just hanging there...

The show opened up with "Now I'm here" , and Adam, who was a runner up in the 2009 American Idol, a confident, flamboyant and energetic young man fits in well with the rest of the band, which now only has two of it's original members - Brian May and Roger Taylor -and for two hours they went through the usual Queen repertoire, in Adam's powerful voice.

Another outfit change, this time a vest with tasselled sleeves

 Brian May delivered a guitar solo playing "Love of my life", and started by saying "Let's do this for Freddie". Later on screen they showed Freddy on screen singing the vocals. The crowd cheered...

 A father and son drumming battle between Roger Taylor and Rufus Tiger Taylor was also one of the highlights.

 Roger May dressed in a gold cape sang "Bohemian Rhapsody"  with Freddy Mercury once again appearing on screen to sing parts.

 The show ended with "We will rock you" and "We are the champions", with the whole band on stage,  with Adam Lambert appearing on stage with a leopard print suit and chunky gold crown.
Gold streamers were thrown over the crowd, and that was the end!

Slowly the crowd exited the Arena... 

I loved the show, the costumes, the music, although at times I thought the sound was a bit too loud for me and some of the lights were a bit blinding too, but it could have just been me and my "old ears and eyes"!

The crowd leaves the Arena

The list of songs played: 

Set list (22 August 2014)
Now I'm Here
Stone Cold Crazy 
Another One Bites the Dust
Fat Bottomed Girls
Lap of the Gods
Seven Seas of Rhye
Killer Queen
Somebody to Love
I Want It All
Love of My Life
Days of Our Lives
Under Pressure
Dragon Attack
Who Wants to Live Forever
Tie Your Mother Down
Break Free
Radio Ga Ga
Crazy Little Think Called Love
Bohemian Rhapsody
We Will Rock You, 
We Are the Champions

The video of the last two songs sung at Perth Arena:

PS : My son and daughter in law arrived tonight from their European holiday and I'm glad to have them safely back home.


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