Carv­ing out a piece of his­tory

Sculp­ture by the Sea has been front page news in the Western Sub­urbs Weekly sev­eral times over its 13-year his­tory.

Western Suburbs Weekly - - From The Archives - By JON BAS­SETT

SCULP­TURE by the Sea di­rec­tor David Han­d­ley re­mem­bers for­mer Cottes­loe mayor Rob Row­ell call­ing him to of­fer Cottes­loe Beach as the WA home of the an­nual ex­hi­bi­tion, now in its 13th year.

“I said to him, ‘funny you should men­tion that, be­cause I was just go­ing to call you’,” Mr Han­d­ley said.

The idea to bring the ex­hi­bi­tion to Perth was a 2002 of­fer by its Bondi Beach, Syd­ney spon­sors to widen its lo­ca­tions to Perth or Bris­bane.

“And I im­me­di­ately knew I wanted it in Cottes­loe be­cause I knew of the lo­cal lead­ers and strength of the sculp­ture artists in WA,” Mr Han­d­ley said.

Sculp­ture by the Sea was first held in Al­bany in

1998, and four years later, the first Cottes­loe ex­hi­bi­tion had 37 sculp­tures. It has now grown to be an in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised event that at­tracts up to 250,000 each year.

About $250,000 is pro­vided in State and Fed­eral gov­ern­ment sup­port.

“As the show has evolved, it projects Aus­tralia more to it­self as a cul­tured, so­phis­ti­cated, but laid-back coun­try,” Mr Han­d­ley said.

How­ever, he has learnt from the ex­pe­ri­ence of 13 years lead­ing the event.

“I would have said to politi­cians ‘this show is not go­ing to hap­pen again un­less you fund us prop­erly’,” he said.

A so­lu­tion was still needed for artists pay­ing trans­port costs of about $100,000 each year.

Front page cov­er­age of pre­vi­ous Sculp­ture by the Sea ex­hi­bi­tions.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d466473

Sculp­ture by the Sea di­rec­tor David Han­d­ley with April Pine's work Pause.

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