I'd heard the crowds can be overwhelming (and hinder enjoyment), so I decided to take myself on a Monday morning, thinking this would be less crowded than other times. I was right, and the weather cooperated with me...it was perfect...seriously, not a cloud in the blue skies, comfortable temperatures and breezes from the ocean.
I apologize for the photo overload, but I think these pictures are worth the share. An outdated iPhone5 and no filters were used. Can you imagine how breathtaking these images were in real life? Trust me. Amazing. If my photos aren't enough for you, check out the glorious images on the event's website.
Some of the sites without sculptures...
After taking a short train ride from the city (15 minutes, maybe?), I grabbed a bus from Bondi Junction to Bondi Beach. Again, another short trip. I started the walk at the Iceberg's end of Bondi (the south?...sorry, I'm directionally-challenged...I use landmarks to get around). Iceberg's is photographed often...it's a restaurant, bar, clubhouse, and swimming pool that overlooks Bondi Beach and the ocean.
Some of the walk is protected by railings, but a lot of it is open to the rocks, water, and grassy areas. It's not a difficult walk and only about 1.4km long (a little less than a mile) with some steps but not many.
After a stroll along the coast, the sculptures join a big grassy park. There is a café for people to stop and have a snack if they choose. Everyone is free to roam around and view the sculptures from all angles.
I do have one question - what part of "do not touch the artwork" is so difficult to understand? Language barriers. I get that. But, men and women coupled up having a chat about the materials from which a piece of art is made and then knocking, rubbing, feeling it up and down. No. Unacceptable.
It was in this park area that I spotted my favorite piece (pictured below)..."Embrace" by Geoffrey Bartlett. I posted this on my ig, and the artist thanked me for admiring his work. Clearly, he wants to be my best friend. Seriously, admire I did. I sat down and just looked at it, listening to the ocean waves below, feeling the cool breezes, watching photographers come and go.
You know what sculpture I didn't take time to admire? The one with the ginormous group of shouting school kids running in and out of it. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad that schools expose kids to such artistic endeavors, but it wasn't my day to practice patience for them.
After spending my share of time at the park, I ventured along the coastal walk. I looked down a path of stairs (not a part of the exhibit) and saw a sign for "McKenzies Bay". In the midst of tourists, locals, school children, retirees, joggers, photographers, and dog walkers, I found a place to retreat...all by myself...no one else came down there. I sat down and just watched the waves for awhile, listening to a natural waterfall behind me. Then, I remembered "hey, I've got about 100 pages left of my book to read." Yep. I opened that book and finished it right there on that rock...with this view:
After my moment of me, the ocean, and my book, I continued the walk to see more sculptures.
My walk and the exhibit ended at Tamarama Beach (or some start here and walk the other way.) I took off my shoes, put my toes in the sand, and checked out the sculptures on the beach.
I ended my morning at the park along the beach and enjoyed a raspberry "icy pole". Did I mention that this event is FREE to the public?! It was a time that I actually stopped to think about my gratitude to sponsors and endowments for offering such a spectacular collection for FREE. I spent about 3 hours enjoying the sites and sounds, and I enjoyed every minute of it.
Sculpture by the Sea is held every year late October/early November. Who wants to join me for 2017?