Queen Victoria Market is Victoria's premier open-air market. It's a thriving and vital place pulsating with life.
The friendly competition between stallholders, and their concern for customers, is what gives the Market its Old World charm and the addictive power to draw millions of visitors each year.
The vibrant, cosmopolitan atmosphere of this historic site has endeared the Market to Melburnians for 130 years. The Market is probably best known for its huge variety of fresh produce. Almost 50% of the Market area is dedicated to the sale of fresh produce, including fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, chicken, seafood and delicatessen products.
The remainder of the Market is used for variety and speciality goods, with Sundays being the most popular day for this category. On Sundays, the hustle and bustle of the weekday Market gives way to a more relaxed and leisurely family day. Queen Street is closed and converted into an outdoor cafe area, with children's rides and other activities.
The Market is divided into a number of Market Precincts; the Deli Hall, Elizabeth Street Shops, F shed laneway, Vic Market Place Food Court, Fruit and Vegetables, The Meat Hall, Organics, General Merchandise, Victoria Street Shops and the Wine Market.
Sculptures and Monuments:
By Pauline Fraser (1995)
This large bronze, red gum and granite sculpture, featuring an array of vegetables, fish and an Aboriginal fishing net, looks whimsically to the relationship between the land and city, tradition and lifestyle, production and consumption.
Location: Queen Victoria Market Dairy Produce Hall, 60 Therry Street, Melbourne.
Dairy Hall Window
By artist Bernice McPherson and architect Craig Perry (1995)
Bernice McPherson and Craig Perry collaborated to produce this ornamental glass and steel window for Melbourne's historic Queen Victoria Market, which opened in the late 19th century. This window installation features etched pastoral imagery, as well as associated objects, such as an historic glass milk bottle, in the cavity between its internal and external panes.
Location: Queen Victoria Market Dairy Produce Hall façade, 60 Therry Street, Melbourne.
By Mark Stoner (1994)
Passage is a memorial to the former cemetery site and those once buried here. Stoner's monumental, non-representational sculpture evokes the timelessness and symbolism of an ancient Egyptian pyramid. He has described the work as 'a passage for memories or dreams', but the site is also a place of passage between worlds.
A bronze plaque alongside a map of the former cemetery reads: 'Passage commemorates the Old Melbourne General Cemetery, which was located on this site between 1837 and 1917. The illustration is based on a 1863 map. In 1878 the market expanded and took up the area between Victoria and Fulton Streets, three quarters of the Jewish allotment and all the Society of Friends and Aboriginal allotments. Between 1920 and 1922, 914 bodies were exhumed and reinterred in other cemeteries around Melbourne. By 1936 the Queen Victoria Market expanded to take up the entire Old Melbourne General Cemetery site.'
Location: Queen Victoria Market, Cnr Queen Street and Therry Street, Melbourne.
Women's Christian Temperance Union Drinking Fountain
The Women’s Christian Temperance Union of Victoria presented the City of Melbourne with a Memorial Drinking Fountain to commemorate the visit of the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York in 1901 in an effort to promote abstinence. It is a stone drinking fountain enclosed by four turned marble pillars and granite canopy with painted gothic arches; on the top of the canopy there is a finely carved figure representing '‘Hope."
Location: Victoria Square, Cnr Elizabeth Street and Victoria Street, Melbourne.
John Batman Memorial
The monument commemorates John Batman (1800 -1839) who is best known as a founding father of Melbourne. Batman was buried in the old Melbourne cemetery (since 1922 the Queen Victorian Market), but no headstone marked his grave. When interest in Batman arose 40 years later it was near impossible to establish his burial place. Once found, a bluestone monument was erected in his memory in 1881 and publicly unveiled on the 3rd June 1882.
A prosperous Tasmanian farmer, Batman looked to Victoria to increase his grazing lands. In 1835, Batman made his controversial ‘treaty’ with Wurundjeri elders and returned to Launceston to make arrangements for the new settlement. On returning to Victoria some months later, he found John Pascoe Fawkner had already settled the site of Melbourne. With his health declining, he settled on Batman’s Hill, near the present site of the Southern Cross Railway Station. He died of syphilis just four years later in 1839.
Location: Queen Victoria Market, Queen Street, Melbourne.
By Lisa Young (2003)
Island Wave is a large work made from steel that comprises a repeated motif and which follows the gentle curve of the Franklin and Queen Streets roundabout. Young's motif is a French curve, to which she was drawn for its sensuality and its past use as a mechanical drawing aid for the technical works executed by engineers and architects. The repetition of this motif along the curve of the roundabout creates a sense of movement, particularly for the motorist travelling alongside it. It is scaled to give one the sensation of both moving in rhythm to and being engulfed by a wave. Unlike a solid monolithic sculpture, there is a certain 'lightness' about Island Wave, which is achieved by its thinness, its open form and the sense of movement it evokes. Island Wave engages both the motorist and pedestrian, and its prominent location near Queen Victoria Market ensures that it has a local and international audience.
Location: Roundabout at the intersection of Franklin Street and Queen Street, Melbourne.
Building at Corner of Queen Street and Franklin Street
The building has a number of sculptures around its base. On the Queen Street side is a large figure with wings holding a skull in one hand and a breast in the other. Along the Franklin street side are three sets of figures titled Roma, Mondo and Equus.
Location: Cnr of Franklin Street and Queen Street, Melbourne.