Sculpture on the Edge 2016…

The Gang took advantage of a glorious (post)summer’s day to hightail it to Bermagui yesterday for our annual Sculpture on the Edge fix. And what a sweet day it was; sun, sea, lunch and Gulaga with a side serve of sculpture. Perfeck.

In terms of muscle, Sculpture on the Edge is clearly overshadowed by Sculpture by the Sea (now grown into a wondrous behemoth straddling Sydney/Perth/Denmark) and innumerable spin-offs from the same. But it would be a gross disservice to make unfavourable comparisons on that account. SOTE simply doesn’t have the demographic and monetary clout/support that underpins the plethora of prominent, flourishing events and can’t possibly compete with the status game that drives national sculptural pageantry. And it doesn’t seek to. What Sculpture on the Edge does have is of far greater importance; it has heart and zeal and vision (albeit localised.) It’s the classic ‘little engine that could’.

This year marks the 10th anniversary of the event, a decade long&hard haul by initiator and prime mover Jan Ireland and her intrepid band of helpers (entirely voluntary, including Jan herself.) In anyone’s language it’s modestly sponsored (though obviously all due respect to Patrons Phillip Cox and Janet Hawley for stumping up the acquisitive prize and prestigious support from the get-go.) The Bega Valley Shire Council clambered aboard last year with the $10,000 acquisitive public art prize (for how long is not clear) but other awards are arguably less of a cost to the various sponsors than an outlay on a swish pair of new shoes. And $1000 from local juggernaut Bega Cheese comes across as somewhat shy of generous (you can write it off your tax, people!)

This being so, the greatest challenge for SOTE is the ability to attract and sustain a critical mass of entries given (a) the cost, to the artists, of shipping (particularly the large) works to the relative isolation of the Far South Coast and (b) the lure of greater kudos and lucre at the more pumped and aggrandized events. Thankfully for Bermagui those tidal (career)shifts are balanced by a core group of artists (both local and regional NSW/ACT) who do maintain an ongoing involvement, ensuring quality and diversity of the field regardless of number. Consequently SOTE is a little gem of a gig and totally in synch with its setting. (If the Burghers of Bega and Bermagui are looking for more bang, they’re going to have to put up a lot more buck and not necessarily only in prizes; the back-end, ie the organisation of the event, needs to be given, at the very least, some appropriate base funding.)

Anyways, enough of the soap-boxing. We had a lovely day of what never fails to be an entertaining engagement. It was great to see Richard Moffatt back in the swim – and hard to dismiss the wisdom of the judges awarding him the gong. His piece, The Giving Tree, hits a strikingly simpatico chord and can’t fail to be universally popular (apparently towns across the Shire are already squabbling over who should have it!) Congrats to Richard…


Richard Moffat, The Giving Tree

Richard Moffatt, The Giving Tree, steel

Okay, so from here on in we’re not going to show all the works, just the ones we liked the most (which we assure all and sundry is no reflection/judgement whatsoever on any of the pieces left out. We’re merely posting stuff that took our fancy/charmed us personally.)

In the small sculpture show:

Michael Snape’s always cool…


Michael Snape, Bowl 17

Michael Snape, Bowl 17, stainless steel

…we love Jimmy Rix, big time…


Jimmy Rix, First Signs of Spring

Jimmy Rix, First Signs of Spring, steel, copper, paint

…the winner of the Janet Shirley Walker Environmental Award…

Louise Pratt. Temptation

Louise Pratt, Temptation, coal, resin, gold leaf

…cute bird biz…

Linda Davey, Curly Oyster Catchers

Linda Davey, Curly Oyster Catchers, ceramic steel

…and, of course, we’ve gotta love this one (cos Megsie made it!)…

Megan Bottari, Teleo(phonic)morph: Channelling Sal (long distance call)

Megan Bottari, Teleo(phonic)morph: Channelling Sal (long distance call), lost wax cast crystal, found object

…and what’s not to love about Barak Zelig’s work…

Barak Zelig, Big Shot...

Barak Zelig, Big Shot, plastic, metal, fabric

Barak Zelig, Little Betty

Barak Zelig, Little Betty, plastic, metal, fabric

…we can’t resist a pat…

Gunther Kopietz, Howling Dog

Gunther Kopietz, Howling Dog, timber

…and we’re suckers for bunnies…

Victoria Nelson, Reclining Bunny

Victoria Nelson, Reclining Bunny, Carrara marble

…and a weave…

Sharon Stevens, Bower 1,2,3

Sharon Stevens, Bower 1, 2, 3, stainless steel, copper

And then there was the Main Event: the big stuff…

More kanga biz…

Jimmy Rix, Roo Shooter

Jimmy Rix, Roo Shooter, welded corten steel

Jimmy Rix, I Still Call Australia Home

Jimmy Rix, I Still Call Australia Home, welded cortex steel

…and this tickled our fancy (could’ve been entitled Rocky Hall!)…

Rowan Dixon, Stoned Again

Rowan Dixon, Stoned Again, granite, metal

…as did the peculiar…

Sian Watson, Drongo (Sitting)

Sian Watson, Drongo (Sitting), stained fabric, wire, steel, cotton, horse hair

Sian Watson, Drongo, (Standing)

Sian Watson, Drongo (Standing), stained fabric, wire, steel, cotton, horse hair

…the weird…

Steven Harrison, we are such stuff as dreams are made of

Steven Harrison, We are such stuff as dreams are made of, wood, plaster coated with Aquablock

…and the curiously elegant…

Barak Zelig, Shaping the Landscape

Barak Zelig, Shaping the Landscape, steel

Well worth the outing – catch it while you can (and choose your own favourites.)

Wraps up on Monday 14th March (closing event: Community Picnic and Fire Festival from 5-8pm Sunday 13th up on the Endeavour Point Headland.)

One thought on “Sculpture on the Edge 2016…

  1. Pingback: Sculpture on the Edge 2016… | Prisoners of the Crown

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