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France gets mechanical animals – Canberra gets tit balloon

By what_the - 20 May 2013 53

I know art is subjective, but when I think of creativity I think of something like this – in France’s mechanical animal theme park.

The main piece – the elephant, cost $3.5mil to create funded through EU arts funding, however the public can actually ride this at the cost of 7euro a pop. 

It attracted 285 000 people in its first year – that’s 10 tittycarps! 

It’s art that generates revenue and was designed to attract residents, not piss them off! 

There’s a difference between art the challenges people and art that sticks tits on the side of a balloon. 

I’m still yet to see how anyone thinks Skywhale represents either Canberra or its centenary.  It’s a balloon that no one in Canberra can actually use, paid for by Canberrans.  It seems to be taking the piss, not challenging one’s perception.

What’s Your opinion?


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53 Responses to
France gets mechanical animals – Canberra gets tit balloon
pajs 3:58 pm 20 May 13

I can imagine the French being quite keen on the skywhale, whimsy and all.

Zan 3:29 pm 20 May 13

Thumper said :

Frankly, I would have liked to have seen $300K go to emerging Canberran artists with a brief of making something with relevance to Canberra.

As apart from lavishing money on an already established, internationally at that, artist such as Piccinini.

50 artists at six grand a pop? Could have led to some interesting pieces.

And I kind of like the huge multi-breasted boob parrot.

The powers that be in Canberra are not interested in Canberra artists unless they have made their name elsewhere.

Ben_Dover 3:01 pm 20 May 13

chewy14 said :

I think this is part of the problem. Surely art being commissioned for the Centenary should have been more accessible and representative of the general community.

The problem is really letting arty-farty types organise the centenary “celebration”.

The problem is not having an “event” to mark the centenary, but a random collection of “happenings” which will only be attractive to a small minority of the population.

The problem is wasting $300,000 on something totally irrelevant, which has no lasting value, and makes us look a laughing stock.

The problems is the idea that making the city and territory seem full of wasteful hipsters, somehow is of promotional value.

The problem is that Canberra’s centenary, co-opted sporting events, which should have happened here anyway, and used them to pretend we were having something unique.

The problem is that the Centenary will not be marked by a celebration by the people of the city.

The problem is that the Centenary, once over, will quickly be consigned to the dustbin of history and remembered as a missed opportunity.

I could go on…..

.

chewy14 2:27 pm 20 May 13

Barcham said :

However all the artists I know think the Skywhale is brilliant.

I think this is part of the problem. Surely art being commissioned for the Centenary should have been more accessible and representative of the general community.

Skywhale seems to be aimed directly at the artistic community so they can pat each other on the back about how trendy and unique it (and they) are.

Dilandach 2:02 pm 20 May 13

Ugh I’ll be happy when there is no mention of the ‘skywhale’. Really really sick of hearing about it.

Barcham 1:55 pm 20 May 13

HiddenDragon said :

Some of us read stories like this:

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/homeless-hit-hard-by-cuts-to-subsidies-20130516-2jpoz.html

assume that they are essentially true (allowing for the usual deflecting “clarifications” from unnamed spokespersonages) and think that while brilliant wonderful things are nice, perhaps there are more pressing priorities in this town.

So are you saying the government shouldn’t support the arts at all?

mezza76 1:19 pm 20 May 13

Thumper said :

And I kind of like the huge multi-breasted boob parrot.

Me too. I stopped by to see it on the weekend. For pure sex appeal there is nothing quite like it. Hundreds of people watching and getting their photo taken with it. Cars stopping in middle of the road.

Say what you will on the significance of it – it’s a stunning display, that literally stops traffic and is a great conversation piece. The free media benefits now make it a huge success.

gentoopenguin 1:13 pm 20 May 13

You mean we could have had a ride-on squid? That would have been far more representative!

krome 12:51 pm 20 May 13

Can someone commission me to build animatronic parliamentarians that people can ride for $10 a pop? Joe Hockey would come in both his new svelte solo model and his previous family size.

Thumper 12:39 pm 20 May 13

Frankly, I would have liked to have seen $300K go to emerging Canberran artists with a brief of making something with relevance to Canberra.

As apart from lavishing money on an already established, internationally at that, artist such as Piccinini.

50 artists at six grand a pop? Could have led to some interesting pieces.

And I kind of like the huge multi-breasted boob parrot.

HiddenDragon 12:37 pm 20 May 13

Some of us read stories like this:

http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/homeless-hit-hard-by-cuts-to-subsidies-20130516-2jpoz.html

assume that they are essentially true (allowing for the usual deflecting “clarifications” from unnamed spokespersonages) and think that while brilliant wonderful things are nice, perhaps there are more pressing priorities in this town.

rosscoact 12:30 pm 20 May 13

poetix said :

All art should be presented on black velvet, and confined to three subjects: Elvis, swagmen and cute kiddies. A friend of mine drew Elvis and a swagman talking to a cute kiddie, but that’s too radical for me.

I find it pathetic how some people think that authentic and challenging art must be found elsewhere than in Canberra. As to Skywhale, some people just can’t deal with wings of breasts and categories being challenged.

Don’t forget dogs playing poker

poetix 12:25 pm 20 May 13

All art should be presented on black velvet, and confined to three subjects: Elvis, swagmen and cute kiddies. A friend of mine drew Elvis and a swagman talking to a cute kiddie, but that’s too radical for me.

I find it pathetic how some people think that authentic and challenging art must be found elsewhere than in Canberra. The French park may be fun, but why hold it up as some model for Canberra?

As to Skywhale, some people just can’t deal with wings of breasts and categories being challenged. It’s a deeply ambiguous object, and quite lovely.

Barcham 12:19 pm 20 May 13

The point of arts funding is not to “buy” art for Canberra. It’s to encourage art in Canberra, it’s to create culture, it’s to fill Canberra with brilliant wonderful things.

A great many artists receive arts funding from the government every year and they keep what they create. Why would Piccinini’s work be any different?

What I find odd is how people seem to think they coughed up extra to pay for this. You did not. You paid the same taxes you would have if the Skywhale did not exist. This was taken from a budget that was designed to go towards art.

If anyone can complain about the cost, it should be other artists. After all, the Skywhale didn’t take money from schools, or hospitals, or roads. It took money from the arts. It could have gone to another artist.

However all the artists I know think the Skywhale is brilliant.

Like Canberra, the Skywhale is a wonderful thing that is sadly mocked by people who don’t and won’t even try to see the beauty in her, and I for one feel that makes her the perfect mascot to our fair city.

johnboy 12:04 pm 20 May 13

So you want your art to be derivative, vastly more expensive, and imitating life?

Surely the question is not one of do we get a skywhale or an animatronic elephant?

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