When Printing Becomes An Art Form: Quality Press Returns As Print Partner For ‘Sculpture By The Sea’

When Printing Becomes An Art Form: Quality Press Returns As Print Partner For ‘Sculpture By The Sea’

When Printing Becomes An Art Form: Quality Press Returns As Print Partner For ‘Sculpture By The Sea’

Posted on
Credit: Sculpture By The Sea

We at Quality Press were honoured to be partnered with ‘Sculpture By The Sea’ again for the 2024 national tour, as we have done since 2014.

About Sculpture By The Sea

Held since 1997, ‘Sculpture By The Sea’ is a free national community event that has captured the hearts of thousands of Aussies and tourists with its artistic expression and thought provoking atmosphere by the seaside. Initially beginning in Bondi, the event became an annual feature in Bondi and Snowy Valleys in NSW, exhibiting more than 100 sculptures at one time.

In 2005, this remarkable event moved west to Western Australia and ​​now features over 70 sculptures on the famous Cottesloe Beach, exhibiting artists from across the world and with an estimated 220,000 visitors across 18 days. Major sponsors and partners for this event this year included Roy Hill and Hancock Prospecting, with the support of The West Australian Government, local Minister for Tourism and the Mayor of The Town of Cottesloe to name a few.

Designed to be observed in the elements and in close proximity, onlookers can follow an audio tour along the beach or follow along via the official printed catalogue, available for purchase. In the bright lights of the Perth sun, patrons can pose with and examine the details of the sculptures, and conveniently take a quick dip in the sea to cool off. After viewing the sculptures, patrons are encouraged to scan a QR code to vote for their favourite art instalment and explore the official ‘Sculpture By The Sea’ App.

This family friendly event exhibits the best of modern art, with this year featuring such fan favourites as ‘Dave’ the Aussie modern interpretation of ‘David’ by Michaelangelo and ‘A.I.B’, simply defined by one word “simulacrum”. Via invitation from Western Australia’s minister for tourism, this event received hundreds of applications from across the globe and eventuated in interesting exhibits such as ‘Seated Man’ from England’s Sean Henry I, ‘The Top of the balance’ from China’s Chen Wenling, ‘Metamorphosis – Inside Out’ by Japan’s, Tetsuro Yamasaki and ‘I Believe I Can Fly’ by Denmark’s Gleb Dusavitskiy.

What Was The Printing Challenge?

As Sculpture by the Sea began in NSW, the challenge was to compensate for the 3 hour time difference with their head office located in Sydney. Along with this time difference, the challenge was the fast turnaround for the catalogue and printed materials that needed; proofing before printing, incorporation of last minute photos of sculptures, approved sponsored advertisements, placement conformations of each sculpture on the beach for the map, submissions of the commencement announcements from local political partners, sourcing high resolution logos and more.

Printing In Time For The Main Event

Once we were able to finalise the catalogue, event signage, artists plaques, promotional posters and plaques, we began printing everything.

All items were printed using different processes, such as High Quality Offset Print, Digital Indigo Print, High Quality Inkjet Latex and Flatbed.The catalogues were printed offset and Bound as an A5 book, while the rigid and vinyl signs were printed on the Latex Flatbed and roll to roll machines.

As the event is annual, we were able to estimate the time needed for the prints and still accommodate our existing seasonal orders and ‘walk in’ customers. It was also helpful that Sculpture by the Sea arranged their own agency to install the printed materials, leaving us more time to focus on the print job at hand for the Perth event.

However, this time around everything was submitted last minute from the event organisers and designers due to last minute changes and submissions. Thankfully, as we are seasoned partners for the event (since 2014) we knew the event inside and out and had begun communicating with the team at Sculpture by the Sea since mid January, meaning we were ready to go by early to mid February 2024. This gave us some beneficial wiggle room for any last minute changes before the official event start date on March 1st.

As we were not the assigned installers for the event, we needed to deliver the materials to the installers on the beach at a specific time, leaving us to ensure that everything was handled and delivered correctly. This was done by staying in regular communication with our drivers and the local event managers at a time that worked for them.

Once the materials were handed over to the event organisers, we remained on call for any extra printing required, just in case there was to be a new site allocation or accidental mishandling of the goods, as on a windy beach, possible damage caused by strong winds is something to be considered. As quality printers, we always take into account the environmental conditions of the season and location, deploying signage experts to ensure the signage will last the duration of the event without damage or fading from the sun.

Results And Outcomes

In the beginning, we were only commissioned to print the catalogues and digital prints, then we invested in our high end signage printing machines, which allowed us to take on the entire printing contract for the Western Australia leg of the national tour. These devices came in hand when we received revised digital versions occurring 24 hours before the official launch date. Quality Press will be back for 2025 next year, see you there!

Total Deliverables

    • 8,000 Catalogue books
    • 2,300 Kids guide books
    • 150 Printed calendars
    • 150 Artist plaques
    • 4 Pull up banners
    • Small signs


Posted in Blog