FREMANTLE sculptor and “Balga Marmon (Blackboy Man)” Bruce Abbott was this week celebrating as the final element was added to a major installation he designed for Elizabeth Quay.
The Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority commissioned Mr Abbott to produce an interpretive indigenous garden at the quay, which was based on a Dreaming story provided by respected Whadjuk Noongar elder Trevor Whalley.
According to the story, three teen boys ignored a warning not to swim in the nearby river at full moon, and were taken downstream until they were flushed out into the ocean, where they were turned into seals and eventually became Carnac Island.
The installation includes a series of bush poles where viewers can watch the moon rise: “Like a bush pole Stonehenge,” Mr Abbott says.
There’s also a sculptural moon which has a rotating shroud to mimic the phases of the moon.
“It was quite a feat to pull it off; it was quite amazing technically and it was thanks to the production team mainly. I don’t want to downplay my part in it, but I did quite a fanciful sketch and said ‘can we do this’ and they said ‘yeah, why not’.”
The team made it quite a Freo job, as it included Simon Duncan, Ben Alpers and Bill McCrostie, with local painter Miles Carpenter adding the craters to the moon.
by STEVE GRANT