Step into a world of towering bamboo, as the forest returns to downtown Sydney in Near Kin Kin. This breathtaking sculpture by Cave Urban draws its name, inspiration, and organic materials from a humble hillside farm outside of Kin Kin, Queensland – where prodigious stands of bamboo invoke awe in anyone who stands beneath them.
Near Kin Kin brings a sense of that wonder to a soaring 21-metre sculpture, standing on the forecourt of historic Customs House Square. Viewed from the outside, the sculpture gives pause to reflect on the forests that stood here for millennia, in contrast with the rise and domination of the built environment that began in Sydney Cove with the first felling of trees in 1788.
Venturing inside Near Kin Kin, visitors are transported to a wilder place and time as they step onto a leafy forest floor and gaze upward to the soaring bamboo. The artists responsible for Near Kin Kin are Cave Urban, a Sydney-based architecture practice and public art collective. Cave Urban have previously created large-scale ephemeral art projects at Dark MOFO, Sculpture by the Sea, Brisbane Festival, and at the 2015 Spectrum Now Festival in Sydney’s Domain.
Near Kin Kin is a powerful moment to reflect on the many layers of Sydney Cove’s history, both visible and invisible.
Cave Urban is a Sydney based grass roots design collaborative. It is an open forum created to cultivate research and connections between individuals and organisations locally and globally by finding present-day solutions for sustainable systems based on vernacular and indigenous models.