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Fantastic View for a wasted opportunity.

Maybe it is just me but if I traveled half way around the world to create a sculpture for a public park - I'd want to make something breath taking. Something that would perhaps inspire. Or at least something that would be as equally impressive as the view.

Barossa Sculpture Park was created as part of a Barossa International Sculpture Symposium which was held in 1988. Nine sculptors from Japan, the USA, France and Australia took part, over six weeks, to each create sculptures that "reflect the environment they stand in and draw attention to the different aspects of the hills, its landforms, the valley and its people below." (to quote the plaque).

As you may have guessed the park is located on a hill, Mengler Hill near Tanunda in the Barossa, South Australia, to be precise. It sits just below the Mengler lookout area which features spectacular views of the valley below. One can't help but feel that the artists took one look at the fantastic view and decided that there was no hope of competing with it.

Most of the sculptures are unremarkable monoliths to modern art and minimalism. Constructed from granite and marble. Of the few that are interesting it is a struggle to understand their meaning or how they relate to the surrounding environment.

This is not a park that I would make a special trip to in order to show my friends an impressive display of art from around the world. However there is a superbly located picnic table that has the best view for which I would return just to share an intimate lunch for two (with my partner of course). Plus if you visit the dirt road turn off a bit higher up the road you can meet some local cows and take photos of them with some of that fantastic view in the background.


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