The Big Powerful Owl
The Big Powerful Owl can be found at the main entrance to Belconnen town centre in Belconnen, Canberra, Australia. Here’s all you need to know about this giant owl sculpture, one of the many Big Things of Australia.
Built in 2011 by Melbourne sculptor Bruce Armstrong, the Big Powerful Owl measures 8 metres high and cost approximately $400,000.
Controversy and Ridicule
Immediately after the statue was erected in the Canberra suburb, it attracted the local’s attention. But the public artwork depicting a Ninox strenua owl, popularly known as the ‘powerful owl’ was ridiculed by many.
Some locals claimed that it resembled a penis, explaining its other nickname – the Great Penis owl of Belconnen.
But the ridicule and hatred for this gigantic owl statue didn’t last that long. As time went by, may locals began to embrace it as the symbol of the town. Even though some still make jokes about this sculpture, the jokes come from a point of love rather than hatred as it was a few years ago.
The statue has also been vandalized in the past and sprayed with graffiti. As a result, the ACT government has spent at least $3000 AUD on cleaning it up.
The Big Powerful Owl isn’t the only Big Thing in this part of Australia. Further down the road, you’ll find the Big Mushroom in Belconnen. Built in 1998, this giant mushroom sculpture stands at the Fresh Foods Markets, and is loved by many children as it serves as a playground at the busy shopping centre.
Other Big Things in Australian Capital Territory
The Big Powerful Owl in Belconnen and the Big Mushroom aside, here are some other notable Big Things in ACT.