I'm a freelance writer based in Perth, Western Australia, who enjoys writing about the things I love: travel, nature-based activities, the arts, spirituality and creative, fun activities for children.
Published August 19th 2012
The whole family will love this unique and quirky art space
Situated just 34 kilometres east of Perth in the rugged Darling Ranges, Mundaring is a picturesque hamlet surrounded by forest which many artists and other creative folk call home. A unique spot in the town which celebrates this inherent creativity is the Mundaring Community Sculpture Park, located on Jacoby Street on the site of the former Mundaring Railway Station.
'Tourists in Mundaring' by Stuart Elliot
Created in 1988 by the Mundaring Bicentennial Community Committee, the Mundaring Community Sculpture Park is a tranquil natural oasis, with attractive plantings of native trees and other flora. Amidst this beautiful natural setting are situated an assortment of sculptures created by some of Western Australia's best known artists, including the somewhat satirical 'Tourists' by Stuart Ellis, the quirky 'Goodbye cruel world. I'm off to join the circus but I missed the train' by Ron Gomboc and a funky Cubist-influenced park bench, 'Mother' by John Tarry. Of course, these are just a few of the works on display at this incredible outdoor gallery: there are many others as well which will both delight and astound you. Children especially will enjoy this delightful and very accessible exhibition, due to its unusual and often humorous ambience.
'Mother' by John Tarry, Mundaring Community Sculpture Park
Nature lovers to the Mundaring Community Sculpture Park will be pleased to know that, in addition to the sculptures, the park is also the starting point for several trails which meander through the Perth Hills, and beyond. While some of these are quite short, others such as the Bibbulmun Track are very long and require an extended period to complete, although most hikers only tackle them in small sections.
Some of the other tracks which begin at the park are the Western Australian Heritage Trails, which include the Railway Reserve Trail that follows the route of the old railway line from Perth, and the Kattmordo Heritage Trail, a 27km trail which ends at Bickley Reservoir. Several Golden Pipeline trails also begin here, ranging from the relatively short Weir Walk, which can be completed in a couple of hours, to the Kep Track, which takes about a week and ends in Northam.
Finally, the Mundaring Art and Sculpture Trail enables art lovers to leisurely visit the studios and galleries of various artisans who live in and around Mundaring, while the Munda Biddi Trail provides mountain bike riders with a terrific long-distance ride that will eventually end at Albany. Apart from the Bibbulman Track and the Munda Biddi trail which were purpose-built, most of these can be experienced in a variety of ways: by hiking, cycling or horse-riding. Information boards in the park give visitors more information about each of these routes. Further information on the trails can be found at the Bibbulmun Track website, the Munda Biddhi Trail website, the Kep Track website and the Mundaring Tourism website.
'Goodbye, cruel world. I'm off to join the circus but I missed the last train.' by Ron Gombok
In conclusion, the Mundaring Community Sculpture Park is a unique spot where the whole family will enjoy spending a few hours. There are several picnic tables scattered amidst the gardens, many park benches (some of which are works of art in their own right), barbeques, a children's playground, and public toilets. Whether you're looking for a restful nook after hiking through the Perth Hills, or an avid art lover, you'll be sure to find humour and inspiration in this unique and quirky community park.
I use to live across the road as a kid (where the fireman stay now). The sculpture park is definitely a great place to explore, especially for kids. We loved going over there to play in our imaginative worlds.