All Possible Worlds 2016
Urban Oasis Public Artwork Commission
Cnr Elkhorn Ave and Surfers Paradise Boulevard
Short-listed design proposal developed with assistance by Urban Art Projects
All Possible Worlds is a public artwork that stands tall at the intersection of Elkhorn Ave and Surfers Paradise Boulevard. It resembles a water-slide but twists, turns and loops in unexpected ways to pay homage to the Gold Coast’s fascination with theme parks. Wet n’ Wild, White Water World, Dreamworld, Sea World, Movie World and formally Grundy’s have captivated the imagination of millions of people who have visited the region or live here.
All Possible Worlds appropriates a familiar object to, not only pay homage to theme parks but, challenge traditional perceptions of public art. By being made of water-slide components (in art parlance this is known as a readymade) it appears functional, however on closer inspection viewers will observe an absence of stairs, water and that its twists, turns and loops lead nowhere.
The corner of Elkhorn Ave and Surfers Paradise Boulevard is visually chaotic. Contrasting architecture, tramlines, a pedestrian crossing, bars, coffee shops, retail stores, billboards, and overhead power-lines vie for attention. Large apartment buildings splice the horizon. All Possible Worlds adds to, as well as contrasts, the dense visual character of this location. It’s bombastic in scale, surreal in form and placement, and ultimately a fantastic public intervention. Qualities guaranteed to raise heads skyward.
Waterslides are sculptural structures. Their scale is impressive; they incorporate industrial framing and scaffolding; they are colourful and/or opaque; and their cylindrical form of tubing twists, turns and loops is strangely elegant. As a public artwork, All Possible Worlds is a curious, possibly confusing, but ultimately playful intervention into a busy Gold Coast intersection.
All Possible Worlds is commensurate with the regions other much-loved fascination—Nature. Its twists and turns define a form that mimics the natural forms of sub-tropical vines and gracefully contrasts the dense architectural forms, lines and edges of the site.