Freo's View


Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on December 14, 2018



The City of Fremantle has selected the successful contractor for the removal of the Felice Varini Arcs D’Ellipse yellow artwork along historic High Street. It is BUDO Group Pty Ltd.

The City will now begin to program the works and take paint samples for matching paint colour .

As a result of feedback from owners, Freo City have planned to start on site in the first week of January, after Christmas and before the new semester starts for Notre Dame students.

The City has scoped the works to remove all the yellow foil and restore the affected buildings to the pre-art installation condition. In the event that owners decide they would prefer to vary the scope of works, the City proposes a couple of options:
1. Contact Budo for a quotation for the full works. The works can then be carried out as part of the City’s program with the City covering the cost of the works outlined in the Property Survey, access and traffic management and the owner covering the shortfall / or
2. If owners would prefer to organise the works through their own contractor, the City will cover the contribution as per the rate outlined.

The City received advice from the Heritage Council which supports the methodology and process being followed.

For owners who have not yet approved the City to undertake these works, the Heritage Council has advised that any work carried out outside of this tender would need to have it’s own independent Heritage Council approval.

The work to remove paint from pavements, lamp posts and roof tiles will be carried out by a separate contractor. This work will coincide with the work in January.

The City of Fremantle will now start to meet with owners who have approved the works to agree a program of works.

Roel Loopers



Kraken 1-8pm


The Fremantle Kraken Festival is on from 1pm today at Arthur’s Head with stalls, a licensed area, music and performances, and a market.

And as the sun sets over the Indian Ocean the Karla-K Koorling will light fires along Bathers Beach, each with a theme; puppetry, dance, song, story telling and spoken word.

The Kraken event will be a small taste of Blazing Swan, offering free public entry to experience some of the Blaze spirit. The Kraken effigy constructed on Bathers Beach will be something to behold, incorporating a pirate ship and sea monster emerging from the sands! A selection of Blazing Swan theme camps will also have open tents at Kraken displaying art, playing music and offering a special experience in themselves………not to miss out hot n spicy street food at The Indian Grill.

At the southern end of Bathers Beach Kidogo Arthouse will open the cute Kelp Bar as well.

Roel Loopers



Posted in art, city of fremantle, culture, festivals, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on November 2, 2018


The FREMANTLE BIENNALE, which was held for the first time in November last year, will be on again around the same time next year in 2019.

The Hightide theme was fantastic and we saw so many great creative public artworks, so I am looking forward to the next one.

The new advisory committee of the Fremantle Biennale was announced yesterday, so here it is:

Ted Snell – Chief Cultural Officer at the University of Western Australia

Margaret Moore – Founder and Director of Moore Contemporary

Clothilde Bullen – Curator of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander exhibitions and collections at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney

Leigh Robb – Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of South Australia

Peter Woodward – Director of Landscape Architecture practice Woodward Design

Ian Kortlang – Managing Director of Strategy and Public Affairs FTI Consulting, Sydney

Ariane Palassis – Heritage Architect and Independent Artist

Tristen Parr – Program Manager Tura New Music and Independent Artist

Jonathan Harris – Director Harris–Jenkins Architects


Tom Mùller – Co-founder & Artistic Director

Katherine Wilkinson – Program Director

Ned Beckley – Contemporary Music Curator

Claire Montgomery – External Relations

Dawit Eshete – Communications

Read more about our people:

The Fremantle Festival will move next year to become a inter festival in July, so that will be an interesting change.

Roel Loopers



Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on October 29, 2018


colourful west end


It appears all is not well with the yellow Arcs D’Ellipse art saga in Fremantle’s historic West End. According to reports I received several building owners have refused to sign the letter of agreement with the City of Fremantle about the removal of the yellow foil and the repair and repaint, as they are not satisfied the best methods are being suggested for the removal.

Some building owners have received their own quotes for repairing the damage, while others have issued writs against Fremantle City.

The highly successful and great Felice Varini artwork became a victim of its own success when CoF decided to leave the foil on the heritage listed buildings six months longer than was initially planned. This resulted in the adhesive becoming too strongly attached and the resulting nightmare in trying to remove it.

Roel Loopers





The City of Fremantle has advised all property owners along High Street, whose buildings are affected by the Felice Varini Arcs D’ellipse yellow artwork, that the City have put out a request for tender for the removal of the stunning artwork, that was put up for the Fremantle Festival in October last year.

A photographic survey with details on the recommended removal technique for each type of substrate on a building-by-building basis will be added to the tender documentation.

The City undertook extensive sampling of various methodologies and has developed a comprehensive list of requirements to ensure that the most appropriate contractor will be awarded the tender.

Work to remove the yellow foil is estimated to start in mid November and completed before Christmas.

Roel Loopers




The last summer Fremantle Festival starts in a month as it will become a winter festival from next year.

10 NIGHTS IN PORT will run from  12-21 July 2019  when the Fremantle Festival returns to a ten-day immersive experience of wild art and hidden treasures in 2019.

Presenting works across contemporary music, theatre, visual arts, film and live performance, the program is designed to encourage discovery and celebration. Informed by a sense of place and the undeniable uniqueness of our port city. Full 2019 program will be announced April 2019.

This year’s festival starts on Friday October 26 with the Wardarnji Aboriginal Festival at the Fremantle Arts Centre, followed on Sunday with the Blessing of the Fleet procession through the inner city to the Fishing Boat Harbour.

On Saturday November 2 Bathers Beach will be set alight when Kraken lights up a big Black Swan and when Karla-k Koorling lights many fires to connect the people of Fremantle, each fire hosting a dance, songs, puppetry, performance or spoken word.

Stay tuned for more info closer to the festival!

Roel Loopers



Posted in architecture, art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on September 10, 2018


High Tide hub


I found it kind of sad to see the lovely High Tide Biennale festival hub being taken apart at Arthur’s Head next to the Roundhouse today.

I really like the construction of the round circle by Harris Architects, that was used for story telling, yoga, concerts, art events,weddings, etc. and  it was also very popular as a playground for primary school students. It juxtaposed really well with the old Roundhouse next to it.

And while we all like to have a whinge sometimes here in Freo, including I, we should also give credit when due, so let me say that it was impressive to see City of Fremantle senior arts officer Corine van Hall lugging around with the heavy wooden pieces, as that is definitely not a part of her job description.

And High Tide Biennale curator Tom Mueller also deserves to be  thanked for physically doing the heavy work all day. Did anyone realise Mueller organised the HT Biennale for the love of art and Freo without getting a cent paid for it?

Well done all and thank you!!

Roel Loopers



Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on September 7, 2018



The mystery of how to remove the yellow art in Fremantle’s historic High Street appears to be a real science, for which one probably needs a university degree. More people arrived yesterday afternoon and were rubbing, pulling and scratching but the outcome was not promising.

One City of Fremantle officer said to a local cafe owner that she wished they had tested it before.

Fremantle Council increased the budget for the removal of the great and popular Felice Varini Arcs D’Ellipse artwork from just $ 15,000 to over $ 200,000 after it became apparent that the removal of the yellow foil would be an enormous headache, but some experts have indicated it could cost a lot more than that.

Roel Loopers


Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, local government, Uncategorized by freoview on August 23, 2018


I could not attend last night’s Ordinary Council meeting of the City of Fremantle, but one item on the agenda is worth interesting noting here.

Among the many budget adjustments was one to increase the public art maintenance budget to $ 221,000 to provide for the removal of the High Street public art.

This money has to come from somewhere, so the increase in funding for the removal of the yellow Arcs D’Ellipse will come from Public Art $ 52,000, Festivals $ 28,000, Fremantle Arts Centre $ 25,000, Events $ 15,000 and net parking income from the Point Street carpark $ 81,000.

I understand one disgruntled High Street property owner lodged a writ this week for $ 50,000 for the removal of the yellow foil from their building, so that would be a quarter of the budgeted money gone just for the one building.

Time will tell when the public tender quotes come in if the $ 200,000 is anywhere near enough to remove, repair and repaint the affected buildings.

Roel Loopers


Posted in art, city of fremantle, fremantle festival, heritage, Uncategorized by freoview on August 17, 2018


Arcs D'Ellipse


This is one of the last blog posts I am publishing about the removal issues with the Felice Varini yellow Arcs D’Ellipse artwork in Fremantle’s High Street, until the City of Fremantle has appointed a contractor and let us know the final costs of it.

But with all the negativity at the end of the artwork’s life I want to point out something we should not forget and underestimate in all of this.

There is absolutely no doubt from the many days that I was in the far West End-that is every day of the year-that there was a significant increase in visitors to Arthur’s Head, who were queueing up on the steps to get photos of the great optical illusion.

The expressions of delighted surprise when they ‘discovered’ the artwork were a real joy to watch and business owners nearby noticed a definite increase in visitors, as did the Roundhouse.

The promotion and marketing value of tens of thousands of photos being shared on social media of Freo’s historic High Street are immeasurable and something you just can not achieve with most tourism campaigns.

The High Tide Biennale that was under the umbrella of the Fremantle Festival added a new and very creative dimension to the tired festival and I can’t wait for next year to see what they come up with.

Yes, it is disappointing that there are serious issues with the removal of the artwork, but that is now being professionally addressed by the City of Fremantle. It is a very expensive inconvenience, but not a disaster. Fremantle is not falling apart, we did not have an earthquake like the poor people of Lombok, but we had an outstanding artwork by an internationally renowned artist that put us on the map as a progressive and creative city.  Let’s keep it in perspective!

Roel Loopers

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