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Skywhales to soar over Ballarat this July

Visit Ballarat

09 May 2022

Filed underNews

Two unique hot air balloon sculptures will take to the city’s skies as part of the Ballarat Winter Festival.

Renowned Australian artist Patricia Piccinini is the mastermind behind Skywhale and Skywhalepapa.

Skywhale was created by Patricia in 2013 and was later joined by companion balloon Skywhalepapa – who carries nine baby skywhales in the shelter of his giant flippers – in 2020.

The Ballarat launch event, Skywhales: Every Heart Sings, will be held at Eastern Oval on Sunday 10 July at sunrise.

It will be accompanied by music written by Canberra musician Jess Green (AKA Pheno) in collaboration with Patricia.

The moment of lift-off will take place to the ethereal sounds of a 100-strong children’s choir under the guidance of local musician Stella Savy.

Entry is free but visitors are encouraged to register on the Art Gallery of Ballarat website to be part of the action.

Click here to register

The final flight path will depend on weather conditions on the day.

Every Heart Sings is a project that talks about nature, family, evolution, care and wonder,” Patricia said.

“The Skywhales float into our lives to make us smile and think.”

The Ballarat Winter Festival will run from 25 June until 17 July.

Skywhales: Every Heart Sings is a National Gallery Touring Event supported by principal partner The Naomi Milgrom Foundation and Visions Australia.

It is the third instalment of The Balnaves Contemporary Series and a Know My Name project.

Main image: Patricia Piccinini, Skywhalepapa, 2020, National Gallery of Australia, Kamberri/Canberra, commissioned with the assistance of The Balnaves Foundation 2019, purchased 2020, © Patricia Piccinini

Across Victoria’s Midwest, we acknowledge that we travel across the ancient landscapes of many First Peoples communities.

These lands have been nurtured and cared for over tens of thousands of years and we respect the work of Traditional Custodians for their ongoing care and protection.

We recognise the past injustices against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in this country. As our knowledge grows, we hope that we can learn from their resilience and creativity that has guided them for over 60,000 years.

As we invite people to visit and explore Victoria’s Midwest, we ask that alongside us, you also grow to respect the stories, living culture and connection to Country of the Ancestors and Elders of our First Peoples.