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Biraban Public School totem pole installation
It lead me down memory lane to be working with the team at Biraban Public School over the past months to create their unique artwork ‘BIRABAN’ reflective of local culture and footprint on country.
I have many memories of this special place as I attended Biraban along with my 5 siblings through infant and primary when it was Toronto West Public.
I’m sure I share the memory with many of my generation the milko truck bringing us little glass milk bottles of flavoured milk each day for recess - how good was that! And the ‘Back Flat’ as we called the large school oval that runs beside Macey’s farm. Back in the late 60’s this area was a wetlands and flooded regularly. More often than not 1/2 the school would end up in the water on our way home, as it was filled with multicolour frogs that we loved to play with.
At 11 I was honoured to be selected as the bell ringer in year 6. I got to take the steel hook from the office up to catch the brass bell, swinging it back and forwards with all my strength to announce recess and lunch.
I have a vivid memory of my first day, as dad drove the green Kingswood right up into the main school quadrangle and pulled up within a metre of the door to the principals office, while everyone looked on, probably wondering who we thought we were haha.
I still have many friends from school and growing up locally, that I often see and chat with ‘up the Street’ today. I truly love being a part of our local community, living my life in our village on the Lake, as I like to think of Toronto.
I’m excited to have Biraban fine artwork displayed in the school reception and to bring concept designs from this across the school including three vibrantly coloured totem poles welcoming the school community as they arrive each morning. Each carries a part of the story and a plague displaying these will also be included at the location very soon.