Skywhales: Every Heart Sings | Adelaide Festival | 12 Mar 2022


Patricia Piccinini, Skywhalepapa, 2020 and Skywhale, 2013. National Gallery of Australia, Canberra © Patricia Piccinini.

Skywhales: Every Heart Sings

After brief migrations to Tasmania, Japan and Ireland, Patricia Piccinini’s monumental Skywhale has a new companion, Skywhalepapa.

Skywhale first appeared in the skies above Canberra in 2013, widening the eyes of the population, leaving many speechless and certain city-folk more forthcoming about public art and public money than at any time since the National Gallery acquired Blue Poles.

Skywhalepapa stands some ten stories high and carries under his nurturing fins the brood of calves that his partner’s magnificent dugs had caused us to wonder about. As Piccinini says, what started as a character has “become a relationship and a narrative”. This lofty pod, with their exemplary share-parenting credentials, will never crash and burn, and they make those Supercouples so beloved by gossip magazines, look miniscule.

Go along with the kids to crane your necks and marvel at them and stay for Patricia Piccinini’s visit to the Writers’ Week Kid’s Tent with her new children’s book Every Heart Sings. You can also pick up a knitting pattern to make your own, listen to their new theme song (Jess Green’s “We are the Skywhales”) or think about fashioning your own version of the Three Mills Bakery speciality croissant in their honour.

They’re tethered only for a limited time so don’t miss them up close.


  • 5.30am: Gates Open
  • 6.10-6.40am: Skywhales Inflation
  • 6.45am-8.45am: Skywhales Tethered Flight*
  • 9am: Event Finishes
  • 9.30am: Site Closes

*Please note: Tethered flight times are an indication only. If weather permits, the Skywhales will float above Elder Park for a maximum of two hours between 6.45am – 8.45am. They will be tethered in Elder Park for the entire time.

things to do in Adelaide for families

For more information and all enquiries please visit the Adelaide Festival website.

What: Skywhales: Every Heart Sings

When:    Saturday 12 March 2022 (see times above)

Where:   King William Street, Adelaide 

Who:   Everyone

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

Image Source: Adelaide Festival website


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