SWELL Sculpture Festival
Date: 11 – 20 September, 2015
Location: Pacific Parade, Currumbin Beach
Queensland’s largest outdoor celebration of art and culture is taking shape, with the SWELL Sculpture Festival bringing an astounding display of works from 60 international and Australian artists to the shores of Currumbin Beach next month.
The free ten-day event takes place from 11 to 20 September, transforming the iconic southern Gold Coast beach into a vibrant open-air gallery of interactive, engaging and thought-provoking sculptures and installations, and is open all hours.
More than 250,000 visitors are expected to visit SWELL, which will feature a mix of dynamic public artwork, from monumental to miniscule, featuring work of Australian artists and others from the UK, Germany and New Zealand, including a 3.9m tall bejewelled crown structure atop Elephant Rock, a 650kg stainless steel chain dragon, a 1.6m tall lion made from galvanised aviary wire, and a 2m tall breaching whale which boasts internal LED lighting at night.
The festival, now in its 13th year, has cemented itself as the region’s most significant and most loved arts event, showcasing the work of local, national and international artists alongside an exciting program of live entertainment, workshops, kids’ activities, performance art, artist talks, yoga experiences and more.
Providing the perfect soundtrack to the festival, SWELL Sounds at The Avalon stage is a free showcase of live music from the finest of local artists, featuring smooth, soulful sounds all afternoon on Saturday and Sunday of both weekends.
On Saturday 12 September, SWELL Sounds presents the Gold Coast Music Awards Women in Music Line-Up, featuring Felicity Lawless fusing gypsy elements with folk, rock and soaring vocal melodies, newcomer Gracie Hughes, and other talented local songstresses.
Other highlights of The Avalon stage include the all-instrumental ensemble Kerbside Collection, renowned jazz pianist Jeff Usher, northern rivers local pin-up Matty Rogers, and Gold Coast favourites The James Street Preachers.
On the closing Sunday 20 September, SWELL Sounds comes alive with a feast of sizzling Brazilian beats with Som de Calcada and dancers Som Ba Sha, a show sure to inspire crowds to move to the incredible rhythms of traditional Brazilian dance – coco, maracatu and ciranda.
For those wanting to get hands-on, SWELL’s list of master classes and workshops for all ages includes the Monte Lupo Masterclass on Friday 18 September. Budding artists have the opportunity to learn the secrets and techniques to create their very own lady in the celebrated style of Monte Lupo, which has captured hearts and minds with its colourful and quirky ceramic sculptures.
For the kids, The Art of Making Music Workshops on Sunday 13 and Sunday 20 September will enlighten children how to build sculptural drums while sharing fun orchestral rhythms. These workshops have been designed to give kids the chance to explore a collection of recycled and organic material with colour and texture to construct an artwork that is musical.
A popular addition to the festival schedule, Salute to Sculpture returns for its second year, presenting morning yoga and meditation sessions from Thursday 17 to Saturday 19 September with a calming movement hosted by Be Free Yoga, saluting all those sculptors whose works inspire an imaginative future.
Bringing another early-morning dimension to SWELL is Singing Up the Sun, a new event on Saturday 12 September where Clara Durbridge will usher new light and energy into the artistic atmosphere with her vocal soundscape to celebrate the sunrise.
And then at dusk, a series of Twilight Sculpture Walks will allow visitors to experience a selection of works in another light still, as visual shifts impart a new quality with the setting sun. Gold Coast City Gallery Assistant Curator Emma Collerton takes visitors on a fascinating artistic tour full of insights, on the first (TBC) Sunday.
Northerly SWELL will also take place again this year, expanding the exhibition from Currumbin to Helensvale Library where an impressive sculpture of a giant whale made from chain links and measuring almost 3m in height will be displayed from 24 August for the duration of SWELL.
SWELL artists work across all mediums, and vie for awards of more than $25,000, including the coveted $15,000 SWELL Sculpture Award sponsored by The City of Gold Coast and highly popular $3,000 Currumbin Beach Vikings SLSC People’s Choice Award.
SWELL Sculpture Festival is a not for profit arts organisation. SWELL Sculpture Festival is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and Tourism and Events Queensland as a part of the vibrant calendar of events on offer throughout the State.
Connecting Southern Gold Coast Ltd proudly supports SWELL Sculpture Festival.
For more information, please visit www.swellsculpture.com.au.