In the first of a series of articles showcasing some of the amazing pieces of classic and contemporary artwork housed inside the Adelaide Town Hall – City of Adelaide Curator Polly Dance spoke with the artist behind a large-scale mural that members of the public will get a rare chance to feast their eyes on at the Adelaide Town Hall’s Open Day on Sunday 7 October from 10am-4pm.
The annual Open Day event is an opportunity for people to explore spaces within the Adelaide Town Hall that are normally accessible only by invitation or used by staff and Elected Members. For this year’s event, more doors will be open than ever before with visitors invited to discover not just the impressive Council Chambers, newly refurbished Queen Adelaide Room, balcony bar, bell tower and Lord Mayoral offices but – for the first time ever – the office of the City of Adelaide’s Chief Executive Officer, Mark Goldstone.
Why? Well, adorning the walls of the CEO Office is a recent new art acquisition created by Scott Rathman of Rusted Tin Contemporary Aboriginal Arts. This significant new artwork now forms part of the City of Adelaide’s Civic Collection.
Scott is an Aboriginal artist based in Adelaide. His arts practice combines traditional and contemporary design techniques to create unique creative outcomes. Scott is also an experienced art workshop facilitator and has worked with several local councils and schools.
In 2017, Scott facilitated three workshops for City of Adelaide staff and Reconciliation Committee members, in which participants were asked to express what ‘Reconciliation’ meant to them. In Scott’s words he wanted them “to reflect on how [Reconciliation] makes them feel, what colours they see it as and what they personally think it is in real and practical ways.”
Those involved in the workshops were then asked to explore what role Reconciliation plays within the organisation currently. The workshops were a fantastic way for all the participants to really consider and reflect on how Reconciliation might be represented and more importantly what more could be done.
“Participants could see what was taking place in both the organisation and wider community, but nearly all were searching for more to take place,” said Scott.
Scott then worked with the representations, designs and descriptions that had been brainstormed during the workshops and made a significant artwork which, since April 2018, has been on permanent display in the CEO’s Office.
The Reconciliation Mural is made up of four panels, each measuring about 1.2 x 2 metres, and each containing a symbol of Reconciliation designed by individuals who’d attended his workshops. Linking these four symbols, Scott painted the River Torrens with the blue water representing the ongoing journey towards Reconciliation. The surrounding green lands represent growth, and the yellow and red ochre symbolise the setting of the sun and new beginnings
This important artwork acts as a constant reminder of the City of Adelaide’s journey towards and the continuous commitment to Reconciliation. Don’t miss the chance to see it up close at the annual Adelaide Town Hall Open Day on 7 October 2018. No bookings required.
For more information about Reconciliation in the City of Adelaide – click here.
Artwork Credit: Scott Rathman of Rusted Tin Contemporary Aboriginal Arts in collaboration with City of Adelaide staff, Reconciliation Mural, 2017-18, acrylic on board, 4 panels each: 1.2 x 2m, CC003159, Civic Collection, City of Adelaide.