Monday, 30 January 2012

THE YELLOW PERIL

"Vault" is a public sculpture in Melbourne and is the work of sculptor Ron Robertson-Swann. It is an abstract, minimalist sculpture built of large thick flat polygonal sheets of prefabricated steel, assembled in a way that suggests dynamic movement. It is painted bright yellow. It is presently located outside the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (ACCA) in Southbank.


"Vault" is a key work in Melbourne's public art collection, and of considerable historical importance to the city. Vault has weathered much controversy throughout its existence. Commissioned by the Melbourne City Council in 1978 for the newly built Melbourne City Square, the sculpture was not even built before it began to attract criticism from conservative media and council factions, on the grounds that its modern form was felt to be unsympathetic to the location. The cost of $70,000 was also felt to be excessive. The sculpture, which officially had no title at this date, was given the derogatory nickname "The Yellow Peril" by the newspapers, a name which has stuck.


Installed in the City Square in May 1980, "Vault" lasted until December of that year, when its dismantling coincided with the State Government's sacking of the City Council. The Builders Labourers Federation consequently placed bans on further City Square work projects. In 1981 "Vault" was re-erected at Batman Park (named after John Batman) and remained there in neglect and obscurity until 2002 when it was restored and moved to its current Southbank location, looking quite good against the rusty exterior of ACCA.


This post is part of the Mellow Yellow Monday meme.






17 comments:

  1. It's amazing how many art critic there are especially when it comes to modern art. :) I like the way you've photographed it!

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  2. Stunning angles Nick... wonderful deep golden yellow against the brilliant blue sky...Bravo!

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  3. There are a few contemporary sculptures in Sydney that have suffered a similar fate.

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  4. Good pics, Nick. I love the fourth one, which has great colors, the best.

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  5. How bizarre that a sculpture could be such a political minefield - and pawn?! A bit like the 'Blue Poles' controversy at the Sydney Opera House!! The angles in the 4th photo against the blue and red really show its stark beauty. Or maybe it's just a paean of praise to primary colours??!!

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  6. If there's one thing for sure, everyone has an 'opinion' on art!! Most just go eh! but some love to voice out long and loud. This one certainly adds a much needed splash of colour to the area. Love the angles you've taken with it Nick.

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  7. We had the same kind of controversy her years ago with a Henry Moore sculpture in front of our city hall. There seem to be negative people everywhere! Like your shots of this one!

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  8. beautiful yellow peril, vibrant color too :-) Thank you for sharing. Visiting from MYM, hope that you can return the visit too.

    http://www.mommies2ks.com/2012/01/pajama-day-at-school.html

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  9. So pretty!

    Hope you can take a peek at my entry also, thanks in advance.

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  10. interesting angles. the monicker Yellow Peril made me smile.

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  11. Amazing how different this work appears from different perspectives and even distances! That, for me, makes it fascinating!

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  12. Beautiful yellow! Have a fabulous week.

    Liz @ MLC

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  13. This is so eye-catching! Great compositions.

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  14. I'd wish they had put your 3rd angle to the front -that would be the most interesting view, in my humble opinion. Is it called vault because it's standing near a bank? Either Vault or Yellow Peril (which I understand why they called it that way:) ), are names that do not make sense tome. Am going to look up this artist!

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  15. So cool and so interesting!

    Visiting for MYM! Hope you can stop by:)

    http://www.heavenly-dreams.com/green-mango-pickled/

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  16. yellow peril is eye catching.
    my entry for MYMl

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