Friday, 13 January 2012

Tablelands on Friday: Malanda Art Trail Pt 1

The Malanda Art Trail is a series of nine mosaics reflecting the town's character and aspects of its history. Because there are so many photos, I'm splitting this across two posts. (Three, if you include last week's, which features the Looking Ahead mosaic on the Malanda Post Office.)  I'll put up the next one on Friday 20 January. You can read more about the mosaics here (PDF).

The Original Inhabitants mosaic at Malanda Falls.

The mosaic includes a map of sites important to Ngadjonji people. Yamani, the Rainbow Serpent, encircles the land.

The Rainbow Serpent

Fruit bats (also known as flying foxes).

Recollections depicts the opening of the Malanda Hotel in 1911. Roses grow well on the Tablelands. Perhaps too well.

Looking past the statue of Nugget the horse at the wall of Malanda Rural Supplies and the Early Settlers mosaic.

An alternative view of Malanda Rural Supplies. This is a happening town.

Settlers in the late 1800s and early 1900s cut out red cedar, kauri pine and other desirable timbers.

A timber getter chops down tall timber, while a tree kangaroo surveys the encroaching farmland and wonders whether the settlers will leave any trees at all.

The surrounding tiles portray domestic scenes of the European settlers.

The Hardships and Struggles mosaic is on the wall of the hardware shop.

Another view of the building.

The blue and black columns at the bottom of the mosaic show the annual rainfall. It is highly seasonal. Most rain falls at the start of the year in the period known, in characteristic call-it-like-you-see-it-none-of-that-fancy-stuff-around-here style, as the Wet.

The mosaic presents some of the difficulties big and small faced by Atherton Tablelanders.

'Hardships' includes creepy crawlies such as flies, spiders and...wait, what?...snails and slugs. Surely some mistake there. Molluscs are our friends.

'Struggles' shows more of the little critters that vex us. Here are ticks and scorpions. (I haven't seen any scorpions, but then I haven't been looking for then. Plenty of ticks, of course, but they've been looking for me.)

Cyclones are the biggest threat. At the height of the storm, a State Emergency Services (SES) volunteer hangs onto an Australian flag. Behind him, the dunny door blows open and the loo roll begins to unwind. You can write your own punchline.

More next week.


Bernie H said...

Absolutely brilliant stuff! Those fruit bats caught my eye! It's a fantastic collection of mosaics and what a treat for the town.

Snail said...

They are lovely. I'm going to photograph as many items of public art as I can in the central and southern Tablelands.

There's now a bit of a discussion over whether the item I labelled as a portaloo in last week's post is actually a portable nursery. Going by the depiction of the dunny in the cyclone mosaic, I know which way I'm leaning.

And how often are the skies this blue in January?!

Bernie H said...

Great, I'll be looking out for all the photos you post. As for the portaloo, I think I'm leaning the same way as you.

I'm sick of the blue!!! Bring on the grey for a while. Surely we see enough of those brilliant blue skies during the rest of the year!

Snail said...

I really would like some rain. Not torrential, but enough to liven up everything --- including me!

Mt Bartle Frere keeps disappearing behind big cloud banks, but the rain doesn't drift this way.

laurak@forestwalkart said...

BEAUTIFUL!!! i LoVE the rainbow serpent and the little flying foxes!!

what a terrific collection and display of their mosaic art...each telling a personal story of the history!!

looking forward to MORE!

(i'll take the snails 'n slugs over the biting flies any day!)

Snail said...

The bats make me smile every time I see them. It's the look on their little foxy faces.

I am a huge fan of public art of all types. There are some beaut pieces around the place, all accessible (in every sense) and much loved by locals and visitors.