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Public Art in Darebin

In 1996 Darebin City Council embarked on one of the most ambitious public art programs in Australia outside a central business district. After nearly a two decade the City of Darebin has earned an impressive reputation for enhancing its urban landscape with innovative public art projects.

The Public Art Collection consists of:

The Connection by Michael Snape.
The Connection depicts many people coming together in an animated, alive way, the separate components becoming one. It refers to the meaningful links between different groups in the community and the connections which contribute to harmony in Darebin.

Location: Preston Civic Forecourt, 274 Gower Street, Preston (Map: 18 Ref: G12)

Reg Parker Sculpture by Reg Parker
The sculpture is an example of a classic formalist work by one of the early practitioners of the style in Australia.

Location: Preston Library, 266 Gower Street, Preston (Map: 18 Ref: G12)

Well Place Preston by Zabelski Han.
The horse in this piece refers to the working animals that were part of Preston’s industrial history. The human, in offering the horse water, is providing it with nourishment. There is a connection that symbolises the inter-dependent relationship between them.

Location: Preston Library, 266 Gower Street, Preston (Map: 18 Ref: G12)

Blue Orchid by Velislav Georgiev and Anu Patel.
The Blue Orchid sculpture is a ‘tree form’ and seat. The themes are evoked through a range of images: water appears on the horizontal plane that connects the three uprights. While the themes of history and diversity are evoked through flora and fauna imagery, from Indigenous plants to those of the farms, backyards and kitchen gardens of the area.

Location: Corner Cheddar Road and Broadway, Reservoir (Map: 18 Ref: H5)

East Preston Public Art by Anderson Hunt, Cameron Robbins, Dave Murphy and Robert Tickner.
This piece is an environmental and educative piece of public art, including seating, running water, small aluminium sculptures representing indigenous animals and creatures which inhabit the area.

Location: Ruthven Reserve, Cnr Malpas St and Donald St, Preston (Map: 19 Ref: A10)

Source by Adrian Mauriks.
The work relates to the themes the “Present” and “Future” with an emphasis on the natural environment. The colour and the reclining form, which appears embryonic, bring to mind birth and new beginnings and the bud, the flowering of life.

Location: Bundoora Park entrance, Cnr River Red Gum Avenue and Plenty Road, Bundoora (Map: 19 Ref: F4).

The Ramp
Location: Bundoora Homestead Art Centre, 14 Snake Gully Drive, Bundoora (Map: 19 Ref: G2).

Fairfield Industrial Dog Object (FIDO) by Alistair Knox, Ian Sinclair, Jacki Staude and David Davies.

Originally, through the use of sensors and digital controls, FIDO talked to passers by, wagged its tail, wiggled its ears and lit up at night. Unfortunately these controls are no longer working and it is not known whether they will be repaired. The materials used, the form and the interactive nature of this monumental work were chosen specifically to respond to the friendliness and vitality of Fairfield Village and enhance the sense of community for this dog-loving precinct.

Location: Next to Fairfield Railway Station, Corner of Wingrove Street and Station Street, Fairfield (Map: 30 Ref: K10)

Normand Sculpture by Simon Normand.
This project actively involved local school students and was assisted by the nearby Northcote Pottery. The art work was completed in two stages and includes a decorative gateway, a playground, walkways and inlaid park benches.

Location: Clyde Jones Reserve, 300 Victoria Rd, Thornbury (Map: 30 Ref: J5)

Sailing Down The Steps by Simon Normand.
There are two pieces to this work. They symbolise the diverse waves of people coming to Thornbury and the subsequent layers of cultural change and complexity. The boats visually transform the park into a river – an interesting feature as both parks are an overflow path for the drains during floods.

Locations: Roberts, Oliver, Jones and Harry Reserves, Thornbury. These reserves link streets around 18 Rossmoyne Street, Thornbury (Map: 30 Ref: F5)

Darebin People - Not Poles Apart
The designs express and reflect Darebin’s cultural diversity and the history of the site, from land of which the Wurundjeri are the traditional custodians, to brick works (Northcote Brick Company) and then finally as the Northcote Landfill.

Location: All Nations Park, Dennis Street, Northcote (Map: 30 Ref: G8)

Veterans Walk & ANZAC Memorial
Location: All Nations Park, Dennis Street, Northcote (Map: 30 Ref: G8)

Ornamental Grille and Pavement Mosaics
Location: Fairfield Library & Community Centre, 121 Station St, Fairfield (Map: 30 Ref: K10)

Split Rock and Youth Mural
Location: Rubie Thomson Reserve, 356 Separation St, Northcote (Map: 30 Ref: J8)

High Street Westgarth public art piece by Enver Camdal, Helen Bodycomb and Chris Rack.
The artwork includes stainless steel broken insect wing segments, skeletal animal sections turned into bike racks, dog anchors, dragonfly wings on the power poles, glass mosaic sunk into the pavement and vibrant colours stretching along the strip.

Location: 130 High Street, Northcote (Map: 30 Ref: E11)

Baden Morgan Reserve Mosaic
Location: Baden Morgan Reserve, Cnr Robert Street and Jackson Street, Northcote (Map: 30 Ref: F10)

Reconciliation Fountain by Glenn Romanis.
The fountain tells how water came back to the land after a long drought by making the frog that had swallowed all of the water, laugh.

Location: St Mary's, 726 High Street, Thornbury (Map: 30 Ref: F4)

The Nest by David Bell and Gary Tippett.
The symbolic egg form at the heart of this design echoes the hope for recovery and new life, and for the rebirth of the land. The piece also references the conservation role of the park and in particular the role this park plays for the many birds that live and nest within.

Location: Darebin Parklands, 28 Yarana Road, Alphington (Map: 31 Ref: C9)


Web Links

Link Reconciliation Fountain at St Mary's Thornbury

Link Fairfield Industrial Dog Object


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