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Mural for Kotara Public School

Kotara Public school - 11 January 2019

Scope of Work:

To present an Aboriginal Art presentation and workshop to the Senior Mentoring Committee Group students that culminates in the creation of an outdoor school mural and equips them to share Aboriginal art and storytelling using symbolism with junior students at a later date.

The workshop will be presented over a 2 hour period where students will learn about Aboriginal art and traditional visual story telling using traditional symbols. 

Through group steered discussion and contribution around the theme direction: Sharing Culture; School and Aboriginal community connections; respectful relationships; Our local Country, especially the significance of Glenrock Lagoon and the importance of education and connection to Kotara Public School, Students will create individual artworks and story lines that will be than come together in a group design to be presented in a high profile outdoor mural.


Artwork Story:

Tunganbiliko Malang – Share Knowledge Together

This highly textured artwork tells the story of sharing culture across our community.  The imagery highlights local country, the importance of education and the connection made through respectful relationships.

Central to the artwork is a large gathering circle which represents Kotara South Primary School and Glenrock Lagoon.  Both places where people come to learn, from traditional times through to today.  Smaller gathering circles with journey tracks to the large central circle depict the Aboriginal clan groups both on country and represented locally, alongside Elders, students, educators and the broader community as we connect and share culture together.

The importance of education is shown in two ways:

  • U shape traditional people symbols throughout the design of both man (with a spear) and women with a (Coolamon – circle) show it’s about people passing on knowledge past, present and future.
  • While on the top right of the artwork two longer people symbols (representing Elders) along with three smaller people symbols gathered around a small meeting circle symbolising Elders and teachers educating children.

Sitting upon the artwork’s sunrise backdrop to the top left of the artwork is the sun and to the top right the moon, while the abundant bush tucker found at Glenrock Lagoon is represented by the fish and berries. 

Across the bottom of the artwork is water imagery, representing our many waterways including beaches, Glenrock’s freshwater lagoon and Lake Macquarie.  Flowing across the top of this we see middens (centuries of discarded shell from feast held at Glen Rock).  The middens rise into a mountain shape and flatten out behind the large central meeting circle, depicting Mount Yengo and its flat top. Found close by in the Hunter Valley, the dream time story says, ‘God stepped down to create country’. 

A highly significant cultural place to Aboriginal people of this area and known as the Uluru of the East, where ceremony and teaching through initiation took place.

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