Swell Sculpture Festival is where people, art and place come together. Swell in Currumbin will feature free artistic exhibits and some paid artistic classes to bring out the artist in you. Swell Sculpture Festival is one of the best things to do on the Gold Coast in September. Why not plan your trip to the Gold Coast to include some art inspired tours. How about sculpting a live nude model, or just take a simple oil and acrylic painting class.

Swell Sculpture Festival Gold Coast 2018

When: 14 – 23 September, 2018

Where: Along Pacific Parade at Currumbin Beach

Inspired by a variety of creative display of over 50 sculptures worldwide and Australian artists at Swell Sculpture Festival, you can enjoy an array of exhibits, sculptures, galleries,  displays, music attractions, healthy and active activities, or take park in a selection of informative artist talks and many entertainment programs such as kids workshops and classes.

Outdoor Art Exhibition

This year marks the 16th edition of Swell Sculpture Festival and promises a lot more than the opportunity to come face to face with impressive work of art that will capture, inspire and uplift the mood of those attending the festival.

The renowned art exhibition is one of the largest outdoor art exhibition in Queensland. Last editions of the event included art works by numerous artists from China, Germany, New Zealand, India and national states in Australia.

This premier outdoor art exhibition attracts visitors from all parts of Australia and other countries. If you are planning to stay on the Gold Coast this month, put the Swell Sculpture Festival on your things to do in the Gold Coast list and enjoy this amazing art event in addition to the stunning landscape on the Gold Coast.

Scheduled Artists Talks

Come to the Swell Festival for insightful scheduled talks with artists at their sculptures during SWELL.  Discover more and engage in creative conversations with the artists.

When: Saturday 15 – Sunday 23 September

Where: Artist Sculpture Sites

Time: Visit the Information Hubs for Artist Talk times

Cost: FREE

Free Guided Twilight Walks

This year, stay a little longer at our Gold Coast holiday rental options and join the artistic expedition with guest curators to guide you through the sculptures and enlighten you with their insights and perspectives.

When: Sunday 16 September and Sunday 23 September
Where: Currumbin Alley Picnic Hut – northern end
Time: 5pm – 6.30pm
Recommended: $5 SWELL program
Donations welcome

Every Dog Has Its Clay with Dion Parker

SWELL Sculpture Festival

SWELL Sculpture Festival – Every dog has it’s clay

Have a young budding artist at home? Artist, Dion Parker will work with students to teach expressive sculpting to create a stylised clay animal sculpture that will exude an individualised expression. Join Every dog has its clay program and see the artist in your child fluorish. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

When: Saturday 15th September

Where: Currumbin Nippers Club, Pacific Parade

Time: 10am – 2pm open session

Cost: $15

Modelling From Life with master sculptor Phillip Piperides

Always want to be a sculptor? Why not learn from the best? Philip Piperides is renowned in Australia and internationally as a leading craftsman with extensive experience in modelling, casting and finishing.

Within his own foundry, Phillip meticulously controls every step of the process of bronze sculpture making. His virtuosity at modelling and his innovative patinas, through remarkable variations, convey the voluptuous richness of the human body. The masterclass will comprise of 4 parts:

  1. Introductory session;
  2. Sculpting a live nude life model;
  3. Demonstration of how to create a mould;
  4. Video of bronze pouring.

Study under expert guidance as Phillip recounts his experience and knowledge to guide your sculptural practice. Participants will produce a small torso using clay with a life model assisting the figurative process.

When: Saturday 22nd September

Where: Currumbin Nippers Club

Time: 9am – 12noon (break for lunch 12noon – 1pm) 1pm – 3pm

Tickets: $150

Life Drawing Sessions with Rebecca Cunningham

SWELL’s Life Drawing by Artist Rebecca Cunningham will take place on Currumbin Beach amongst a myriad of sculptures amongst the landscape with a life model capturing the essence of form with shape and posture.

Life Drawing is a traditional form of practising art. Drawing from life prompts the viewer to consider the three-dimensional dynamics that make up the human form in its various shapes and postures.

Whether you draw in line, shadow or with a distinctive mark, we invite you to this extraordinary experience to transcend the every day to an enlightening visual journey as you depict the human form through your unique perspective.

When: Sunday 16th September

Where: Meet at Nippers Club

Time: 2pm – 4pm

Cost: $30

Chairs and drawing boards will be provided. Please bring:

  1. A4/A3 sketchbook OR sketch pape;
  2. Something to draw with, personal preference of any of the following – charcoal, 2B & 4B pencil, Conte, watercolour, ink, fine line markers;
  3. Hat/sunblock/long sleeve shirt/lip balm;
  4. Water bottle;
  5. Feel free to bring your own easel

For a tutored session with Rebecca Cunningham, offering advice and tips throughout the session on Sunday morning:

When: Sunday 16th September

Where: Meet at Nippers Club

Time: 9am – 11am

Cost: $45

Plein Air Painting with Seabastion Toast

Want to know what is plein air painting? Plein air painting is about leaving the four walls of your studio to experience the process of painting in the landscape. French Impressionists coined the term over 100 years ago to describe painting in the outdoors to capture natural light, atmosphere and now… sculpture.

Award-winning artist Seabastion Toast will lead this enchanting workshop to teach you how to capture those elusive outdoor qualities amongst the SWELL landscape. The demonstration will be in oil paint but the techniques used in this workshop are adaptable to both oil and acrylic paint.

Guided by Seasbastion, the workshop will comprise of three parts:

  1. Introductory session outlining the elements of design and other useful techniques when approaching the subject;
  2. Plein air (outdoor) painting session;
  3. Feedback/resolution session.

This workshop is an ideal opportunity to look at SWELL in a new light and create your very own masterpiece.

When: Sunday 23rd September 9.30am – 1.30pm

Where: Meet at Currumbin Nippers Club

Time: 9.30am – 1.30pm

Cost: $95

Two canvas boards, 1 portable easel and a stool will be provided. Please bring apron, hat and sunscreen and the following:
  1. Paint – Titanium White, Yellow Ochre, Cadmium Yellow (or cadmium yellow hue), Ultramarine blue, Burnt sienna, Cadmium Red (or medium red or cadmium red hue), Magenta;
  2. Brushes – 3 medium (75mm – 250mm width) plus 1 large (250mm – 500mm width), Filbert or flat bright shape;
  3. Palette – at least 20cm size, flat (no separate ridges);
  4. Rags – both for painting and clean up;
  5. Sketch book and pencil.

ACRYLIC PAINTERS ONLY – please bring water jar.

OIL PAINTERS ONLY, please bring:

  1. Medium: solvent or lean medium for thinning paint MUST be odourless;
  2. Solvent jar;
  3. Please do not bring turps. Oil painters use odourless solvent for clean up and orwrap brushes to clean at home.

Lil’ Dusty At Northerly Swell by Dion Parker

Dion Parker is a Gold Coast multidisciplinary artist with sculpture, illustration and painting all firmly set in his bag of tricks. Dion’s sculptural works, most recently have focused around featureless and mono-coloured dogs. Each dog is designed with smooth, flowing lines to create artworks that are fun and playful.

Dion is a natural talent and has an authentic approach to art. The opportunity to render Dion’s distinctive style to inflatable art was a natural progression. Upscaled and vividly red, ‘Lil Dusty continues to communicate with the viewer through body language.

When: August 29th – September 23rd

Where: Helensvale Library and Cultural Centre, Cnr Lindfield Road and Sir John Overall Drive Helensvale

Time: 9am – 4pm

Cost: FREE

Where to stay for Swell Sculpture Festival

Holiday Holiday’s Gold Coast accommodation options are located approximately 20 minutes Currumbin. From our Surfers Paradise resorts, you can take the public transport or drive to the Swell Festival. While heading down south, why not check out some great activities and what to do at Burleigh Heads area located five minutes from Currumbin.

For an event that inspires, amuses, uplifts and captures the hearts and minds of all who visit, check out the 16th Swell Sculpture Festival this September.