Public Art in Manly Ward

By Manly Community Forum
Published in Community
April 17, 2022
2 min read

Marine Parade, Manly to Shelly Beach is not included in the Coast Walk Public Art Strategic plan but hosts the ‘sculptural walk’ with the small sculptures embedded in the rocks along the path with the brailleinterpretations and the Oceanides sculpture on the edge of the Fairy Bower pool which was recently restored thanks to financial donations from the community. It is one of the most photographed and iconic sculptures in Manly and features on much of the Northern Beaches marketing material.

Perhaps not official, but sculptural in effect, are the two remaining tinnies at Shelly that mark the end of Marine Parade. These much loved tinnies have been fiercely protected from removal by locals and visitors alike over the years. It would cost approximately $150,000 to recreate these as a permanent sculptural feature. These boats are remnants of the fishing history of the Cabbage Tree Bay Aquatic Reserve before it was declared as a ‘no take’ reserve 20 years ago.

Last month Council voted to create the Public Art Selection Panel to provide independent expert advice to Northern Beaches Council on the procurement of permanent public art for the Northern Beaches, as required by Council’s Public Art Policy, with a value of over $250,000.

The principal objective of the Panel is to assist Council in implementing the vision and goals of the Arts and Creativity Strategy, the Coast Walk Public Art Strategic Plan and other public art projects initiated by Council. The Panel will provide advice on the selection of artists for site-specificpermanent public art projects in accordance with the Coast Walk PublicArt Strategic Plan and its curatorial framework.

The Northern Beaches Coast Walk Art projects have been proposed for several locations from Manly to Palm Beach and will provide the Coastal Walk with a balance of artistic expressions that reflect the four curatorial themes:

  • Aboriginal Heritage
  • Landscape and Seascape
  • History and Culture
  • Journeys and Connections

There are twenty-one projects proposed in two stages for delivery. One project in each stage is proposed for Manly, the beachfront at the east end of the Corso and in Stage 2 at the Manly Surf Club. Both these sites are problematic given that there is already a significant sculpture on the east end of the Corso and the Manly Surf club area is a crowded pinch point with a building, showers, pine trees, bike racks, surf craft as well as the entrances to the beach, steps to the Eastern hill and the path to Shelly.

Should the Council consider adding the Shelly to Manly walk to its Coastal Walk Art project and perhaps move one of the Manly locations to Shelly?

Let us know your thoughts at secretary@manlycommunityforum.com


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