Public art – in any city – is a notoriously fraught business. No matter how hard you try to make everyone happy, every work will have its detractors. Some more than others, of course. Notable spats in Sydney’s public art history include the time residents threatened to dismantle Ken Unsworth’s ‘poo on sticks’ sculpture in Darlinghurst (it still stands); the time NSW Parliamentarian Helen Sham-Ho said Lin Li’s ‘Golden Water Mouth’ sculpture in Chinatown “looks like a penis”; and the time then-Oz editor Richard Neville ran a cover photo of himself and two others peeing into Tom Bass’s P&O Wall Fountain.
That said, who could possibly argue for a city without public art? Here are some of our favourites that you can seek out on foot.