HomeLifestyleWhale Rock makes a splash on Bargara coastline

Whale Rock makes a splash on Bargara coastline

Whale Rock
Renowned mosaic artist Paul Perry (pictured) and master sculptor John Olsen combined their talents to create the large art piece that breaches toward the Pacific Ocean.

A collaboration between two local artists is making a splash in Bargara with the transformation of a mighty boulder into Whale Rock, which captures the joy of humpbacks.

Renowned mosaic artist Paul Perry and master sculptor John Olsen combined their talents to create the large art piece that resembles a whale breaching toward the Pacific Ocean.

Using a large a rock found within the Bargara Headlands development, along with hot-dipped galvanised steel, the two artists were able to create an eye-catching public art piece.

John said he enjoyed creating the heavy-duty pectoral fins of Whale Rock and he said they were built to last.

Whale Rock
Cynthia Hoogstraten captured this photo of the sunsetting behind the new Whale Rock at Bargara Headlands.

“They sure are sturdy, I have heard people can climb all over them,” he said.

“I’m really happy with it, and I think creating a piece like Whale Rock can give people such an insight into the way an artist’s mind operates.

“It was a great honour actually.

“The fins are made from perforated plate – the same material as I used on the lung fish in town – and they are twisted to give it a little living magic.”

Paul said Whale Rock was based on a photo taken locally off the Bundaberg Region.

“The whale is based on one of Kevin Hill’s photos that he took when out whale watching off the coast,” he said.

“The rock was shaped to show the whale’s eyes and underside. It gives the illusion of what it is.

“And it’s effective, I think.

“Look at the view you have from here, and imagine the whales you will see passing – it’s just a beautiful place.”

Whale Rock is not the only new artwork making a statement at Bargara Headlands.

Paul also worked with Taribelang Bunda representatives to create mosaics in a welcoming space along the foreshore within a yarning circle.

Paul said Bargara Headlands developer Bill Moorhead commissioned both pieces as he wanted to incorporate reconciliation into the area and the space was large enough to create a yarning circle for the whole community to use.

Taribelang - Bunda Yarning Circle
Mosaic artwork of two kangaroos, Boo'roo, at Bargara Headlands Taribelang – Bunda Yarning Circle.

Working with Byron Broome, Paul was able to depict native animals that are part of Taribelang Bunda’s history, including Boo’roo (kangaroo), Moi (emu) and Unggarr’la (eagle).

“Bill built the yarning circle to the design from the Taribelang people, then they provided us with their imagery to create a gallery,” Paul said.

“When we come into the yarning circle each of these pieces were original artworks that the Taribelang Elders held as part of their cultural possessions, traditional artwork that they’ve shared with us to make and then share with the community as part of their culture.

“They provided us with the imagery and gave me permission to adapt and manipulate them to make it work with mosaics and then signed off on the colours I had chosen – I worked very close with them the whole way through.”

Paul said the Taribelang – Bunda Yarning Circle is open for the entire community to take in and enjoy.

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