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2001/84/12 Golf cart and oversized golf club, 'Shark Fin', performance prop, metal / plastic / polystyrene / rubber, designed by Ross Wallace, made by Ceremonies Workshop, used in 'Parade of Icons' Greg Norman float, Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 200. Click to enlarge.

'Shark Fin' golf cart performance prop used in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony

Designed
This shark fin golf cart has significance in material culture due to its role in the closing ceremony of the 2000 Olympic Games, an important event in the recent history of Sydney and NSW. It has the potential to communicate in exhibitions and publications about the Sydney Olympic Games and has significance in its design, making, use and the cultural meanings ascribed to it.

The closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games took place on Sunday 1 October at Stadium Australia, Homebush Bay. It included solemn formalities, an informal parade of athletes and a farewell party that took the form of an unregimented parade with floats that celebrated and often mocked aspects of Australian popular culture. The intention was to conduct the ceremony with decorum until the extinction of the Olympic flame, and then to unleash a party. The artistic director of the closing ceremony David Atkins explained 'The athletes have finished competition, and are ready to party, and we have set about creating a party to end all parties. We have decided to invite everyone into our giant Australian backyard - fully equipped with Hills Hoists, barbecues, an eclectic mix of music, performers and all manner of Australiana. Australians have a tradition of throwing great parties, and this one will be imbued with a sense of fun, larrikinism and goodwill.' According to Ric Birch (speaking on Channel 7's 'Olympic Sunrise'), the opening ceremony was to represent Australia at large, but the closing ceremony was Sydney's show.

Irreverent humour was evident from the opening (untelevised) sequence, in which the sports satirists Roy Slaven and HG Nelson welcomed the crowd and coached them in how to use the contents of the small eskies that each of the 110,000 audience members could find on their seats. These contained essential Australian backyard barbecue equipment including fly-swats which, when held aloft, gave a distinctively Australian flavour to the Mexican wave.

This shark fin golf cart appeared with the Queensland-born, Florida-based golfer Greg Norman in the 'Parade of Icons'. Australia's most successful golfer, Norman has led all four major tournaments entering the final round but has won only the British Open (1986). Plagued by injury, Norman is now the Chairman of Great White Shark Enterprises, a multi-national corporation comprising golf course design, golf teaching software, turf, residential developments, apparel, golf equipment distribution, a restaurant, wine and yachts. Known as the Great White Shark, Norman joined the parade inside a huge shark float followed by a retinue of 12 fins, which turned out to be golf carts. Norman emerged in front of his conveyance's dorsal fin, stepped onto a perfectly groomed putting-green on the beast's back, and teed off into a grandstand crowd. The accompanying music was from the theme to the movie Jaws.

The wit and quality of the 'Parade of Icons' showed the influence of the late Peter Tully as artistic director of the Mardi Gras in, for example, the 'pit chicks' in silver hot pants who carried the eyelashes, stiletto shoes and giant mascara for the Priscilla bus. Kylie Minogue concluded the 'Parade of Icons' with her hot song 'On a Night Like This'.

The opening ceremony told a mythic story of nation-building that dwarfed individuals. It was evocative and subtle. The closing ceremony, however, celebrated personality, celebrity and attitude. Loud and brash, more like a rock concert than a profoundly theatrical event, it was an extravagant send-off -- fun, festive, shamelessly excessive and decidedly weird.

Summary

Object No.

2001/84/12

Object Statement

Golf cart and oversized golf club, 'Shark Fin', performance prop, metal / plastic / polystyrene / rubber, designed by Ross Wallace, made by Ceremonies Workshop, used in 'Parade of Icons' Greg Norman float, Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 2000

Physical Description

The golf cart consists of a steel frame that has been welded to form the shape of a shark's fin. The frame is covered by chicken wire and then the chicken wire is covered by plastic wrap. The cart holds four oversize polystyrene golf balls and an oversized golf club made from a hollow cylindrical aluminium pole with a cast foam wedge.

Dimensions

Height

2030 mm

Depth

1030 mm

Production

Notes

Ross Wallace, Sydney, 2000 The various types of golf clubs were looked at for use, though only one style chosen. Though handled by performers, the desired look was oversized golf club head.

The various types of golf clubs were looked at for use, though only one style chosen. Though handled by performers, the desired look was oversized golf club head. Ceremonies construction team, Ceremonies workshop, Eveleigh, Redfern, 2000 Steel tubular frame work, fabricated over a jig for multiple reproduction, painted silver. Fabricated single axle held 480mm diameter bicycle wheels. Cooking woks used as wheel covers, painted silver. The frame covered in small chicken wire mesh and wrapped in cling wrap. Silver paint finish.Club made by Ceremonies prop makers Tamara Ealey, Will Northam A clay sculpted shape used to make a fibreglass mould for casting expanded foam. The head cast directly onto 20mm diameter aluminium handle. Silver paint finish. Made by Ceremonies construction team, Ceremonies workshop, Eveleigh, Redfern, 2000.

Steel tubular frame work, fabricated over a jig for multiple reproduction, painted silver. Fabricated single axle held 480mm diameter bicycle wheels. Cooking woks used as wheel covers, painted silver. The frame covered in small chicken wire mesh and wrapped in cling wrap. Silver paint finish.Club made by Ceremonies prop makers Tamara Ealey, Will Northam.

A clay sculpted shape used to make a fibreglass mould for casting expanded foam. The head cast directly onto 20mm diameter aluminium handle. Silver paint finish

History

Notes

Sydney 2000 Olympic games- Closing Ceremonies- Parade of Icons, Greg Norman section, Stadium Australia, 1 October 2000

Made for and owned by the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, and donated to the Powerhouse Museum after the Games.

Source

Credit Line

Part of the Sydney 2000 Games Collection. Gift of the New South Wales Government, 2001

Acquisition Date

5 October 2001

Cite this Object

Harvard

'Shark Fin' golf cart performance prop used in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony 2021, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 21 April 2021, <https://ma.as/345923>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/345923 |title='Shark Fin' golf cart performance prop used in the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games Closing Ceremony |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=21 April 2021 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}