a. Palmer Integrated Projects

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Expressions of Interest are now invited to exhibit a work in the 10th Palmer Sculpture Biennial.

Dear Artists

The 10th Palmer Sculpture Biennial will be a milestone event. Established as one of the longest running sculpture exhibitions in Australia it will continue to present the opportunity for sculptors to freely explore exciting, challenging and contemporary ideas in the extraordinary Palmer landscape. This approach has and continues to attract significant sculptors from across Australia, Europe and the United States. The development of younger sculptors is also at the fore of the Biennials, we would encourage their expressions of interest for the 2022 event.

You are invited to submit an Expression of Interest to participate in the 10th Palmer Sculpture Biennial (requirements below). The exhibition will be open for the four weeks from March 19th to April 10th 2022 and will be an item in the Adelaide Festival Fringe. About twenty four artists will participate from South Australia, interstate and overseas, including an invited senior artist and two emerging artists. It will be curated by myself and Robert Lindsay, former Director of McClelland Museum, Victoria.

We look forward to your submissions for the exciting 10th Palmer Sculpture Biennial.

Kind regards,

Greg Johns.

Greg Storytellas 3

Expression Requirements

The requirement to express interest in the event is to submit a concept outline with supporting drawing/documentation on an A4 page/s after a visit to the site. Interstate/overseas artists should discuss alternatives to this requirement with Greg.  Times will be arranged for artists who haven’t already been to Palmer to visit in groups, and to register for this please contact us. Submissions can be made by email to:


or by mail to Bill Clifford, 1 Elizabeth Street, Oakbank, South Australia 5243.

Please ensure that your expression of interest includes your name, postal address, email address and phone contact numbers. Expressions of Interest are required by Tuesday 1st June, 2021. We will advise participation as soon as practicable after then.

For further information, please contact Greg by email (gjoh4899@bigpond.net.au) or by phone (08) 8278 3273; or Bill (who can also send you a full and more detailed copy of the Expression of Interest document) by email (jandbclifford@internode.on.net) or phone (08) 8398 0868.

All About the Projects

“PALMER BIENNIAL….. is like no other! Big skies, big scapes. An environment that challenges the perception of relationships, of art in landscape. To intrude on an ancient land with a sacred history is Palmer. This needs a particular intellectual sensitivity with a real message.”
Graeme Wilkie – Founder of the Lorne Sculpture Biennale

In 2001 Adelaide sculptor Greg Johns purchased a 400 acre property in the Palmer Hills, 76 kms east of Adelaide. Greg, with the collaboration of Gavin Malone developed the concept of the Palmer Project which encompassed the ecological rehabilitation of the Landscape and the display of both his own works and a range of other contemporary sculpture. More recently, the concept of the Palmer Project has broadened, integrating related endeavours such as ecological education, archaeological and historical research, residencies and seminars in related topics / disciplines and sustainable housing design. Now known as Palmer Integrated Projects, it is evolving as a microcosm of the broad range of issues pertinent to the relationship between art and both ecological and cultural sustainability, part of the challenge facing all humanity. Gavin Malone jointly coordinated the exhibition program and sustainability discourse with Greg for its first eleven years. He is now spending more time on his own work, and the administrative aspects of the project have been taken up by Community Project Management Consultant Bill Clifford.

The small township of Palmer sits at the base of the foothills of the eastern escarpment, from where the land slopes towards the River Murray, about 18km to the east. This is the edge of the mallee country, the rainfall being 400 mm (16 in.) per annum. The area is used for mixed farming, cropping and grazing and the indigenous flora of the area has been almost entirely cleared since European settlement. The Indigenous people and traditional custodians of country are the Peramangk and the area has a rich Indigenous history.

Greg’s place is 3.5 km north of the township on the eastern side of Davenport Road. The locale is known as Rathjen Hill which peaks at a few hundred metres. The 163 hectare (403 acre) property is hilly to undulating with a spectacular rock escarpment and three small creek lines, part of the Reedy Creek Catchment which flows to the River Murray. There is scattered remnant vegetation, the main species being the Rock Grass Tree (Xanthorrhorea quadrangulata), Drooping Sheoak (Allocasuarina verticillata), Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha) and River Redgum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) and numerous native grasses and bulbs.

Sculptural and Cultural Intent
Greg has now placed several of his own works on the property, including new works developed in response to the place. The range of work includes a symbolic reading of the landscape, responding not only to the physical but also the mythical and the spiritual senses of the Australian landscape. He is also developing a collection of other artist’s work; David Kerr, Ian Hamilton, Gavin Malone, Deb Sleeman and Evette Sunset represented to date.

Sculptures are placed in relationship to the whole landscape; it is not a ‘sculpture park’ as such. An exhibition and open day program has commenced and one intent of particular importance is the visitor’s exposure to not only the sculpture but also the ecological landscape, they are symbiotic and interconnected.

Clancy Warner

Whitewashing History – Clancy Warner – Winner, Artists’ Prize, 2014 Biennial

Palmer Sculpture Biennial

A biennial exhibition was established in 2004 which includes emerging, mid career and established artists, with diverse styles of practice represented. A distinguished artist is also invited to participate. The exhibitions are organised on the basis of artist goodwill and involvement. Artists visit the site and respond to that experience, enabling a range of contemporary sculptural expression with works somehow complementing rather than competing with the enigmatic landscape.

Friends of Palmer
A Friends group has been established to assist with ecological restoration and other activities. Planting days and art/ecology related residencies and seminars are being planned for the future. Please email us at palmersculpturebiennial@gmail.com to be involved.

Johns 1

The meeting place from The Round Space – Greg Johns – Photo by Michal Kluvanek

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