It is on the grounds of the Reed's historical estate, that the Heide Museum of Modern Art has dedicated massive amounts of space to the construction of an outdoor sculpture park. It is free to the public and offers many delights for all those who drop by.
The enormous 'Rings of Saturn' by Inge King greets visitors as they arrive. Then, stepping into an elegant plaza carved stone and iron pieces catch the eye. After that, it's acres of rolling green slopes where whimsical, corrugated iron, cows are dotted about. The giant 'Theoretical Matter' by Neil Taylor attracts an audience as well, standing at over three metres tall.
Instead of appearing stagnant and orderly, the Heide Sculpture Park and Gardens are alive with activity. Sculpture is a three dimensional art form and it asks people, not only to passively view, but to find, look into, through, over and around each piece.
To add to the pleasantries, there's a pretty, cottage, garden complete with white picket fence and winding pathways. Rose covered archways lead onto poppy, daisy, and peony plantings. People picnic lazily on the Heide's lawn and meet for birthday parties and family gatherings in the decorative rotunda.
For an extended walk, it's possible to follow tracks out of the gardens and into the adjacent Banksia Park. It sweeps around the banks of the Yarra River, and has informative plaques about the development of the local Bulleen and Heidelberg areas stationed at regular intervals.
By combining garden adventures with a visit to Heide Galleries I, II or III, an entire day can be filled. If it's a meal you're after, then Melbourne's renowned Cafe Vue provides food, in a little restaurant serviced by the estate's original kitchen garden. Entry to the sculpture park and gardens is free. There is a $14.00 admission charge for the other galleries.