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Visiting the Grampians 2022

Hamilton Gallery is excited to announce that the skywhales, two monumental sculptures in the form of hot-air balloons by internationally renowned artist Patricia Piccinini, will be visiting the Southern Grampians region in May 2022.

Skywhalepapa, the artist’s most ambitious project to date, is a new companion piece for Skywhale and together they form a skywhale family. Following their debut together in Canberra, the sculptures will float across the skies of Australia as a National Gallery Touring Event throughout 2021 and 2022.

Commissioned by the National Gallery of Australia, with the support of The Balnaves Foundation, Skywhalepapa will fly alongside Skywhale on a two-year national tour, and then, possibly to international destinations as a part of the $1.3 million performative exhibition, Skywhales: Every heart sings.

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Hamilton Gallery Artistic Director, Joshua White said “I believe that a gallery’s activities should extend far beyond its walls and foster many different types of culture, audiences and artworks. This commission by the National Gallery by Patricia Piccinini is just that. I look forward to gazing upwards and seeing these two amazing and awe-inspiring creations floating across the sky with our wonderful Southern Grampians landscape as the perfect backdrop.

“These large-scale artworks stand more than 30 metres tall and appear to be ‘living’, whilst floating across the Australian landscape, and soon to be our unique landscape. I absolutely cannot wait,” White concluded.

Patricia Piccinini conceives of Skywhales: Every heart sings not only as two sculptures, but also as a performance or event.

“I imagine visitors assembling to watch Skywhalepapa coming to life,” says Piccinini. “With a single skywhale figure we have a character, but with the two we have a relationship, and a narrative.

“Skywhalepapa continued the concepts around nurturing, caring, nature and evolution that began with Skywhale. I’m really moved by nature. The idea that all creatures, not just humans, are perfectly evolved for their environment blows my mind,” Piccinini said.

Skywhales: Every heart sings is a National Gallery of Australia Touring Event, supported by Principal Partner The Naomi Milgrom Foundation and Visions of Australia. Skywhales: Every heart sings is the third instalment of The Balnaves Contemporary Series and is a Know My Name project.

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