A swing set reminiscent of the gallows exactly where two Indigenous guys were hanged in 1842 will be erected as a memorial to colonial conflict in Melbourne.
The memorial marks the initial main monument recognising colonial conflict in Melbourne, and will be established near the site where Indigenous Tasmanian males Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheener had been executed.
It will feature a series of newspaper stands and an Indigenous garden, inviting the public to reflect on the executions – Victoria’s very first formal hangings – on the corner of Franklin and Victoria Streets, close to the old gaol.
Artist Trent Walter, who co-designed the memorial with artist Brook Andrews, stated it was a difficult activity to memorialise such a confronting component of the city’s past.
He mentioned it could be compared to a war memorial for Indigenous individuals, or a marker for hidden components of Melbourne’s previous.
“It’s definitely a confronting story but the space we’ve developed is about reflection – it is attempting to say let’s deal with this traumatic past,” Mr Walter stated.
“It is not pushing a distinct political agenda, it is just saying these issues occurred we want to acknowledge it and think about it more broadly than we have ahead of, and what the implications are for our society.”
The swing set will provide a view towards the old gaol, exactly where Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheener have been kept before their hanging.
Facing the other path, visitors will appear towards the newsstands.
“The concept of the newsstands is that this must be news every single day, we should bear in mind these men and women.”
Just before becoming recruited to design and style a memorial with Ms Andrews, Mr Walter stated he had no expertise of the story behind Melbourne’s initial executions.
“This is a really difficult thing – I think it shows fantastic vision, by the City of Melbourne,” he stated.
“Hopefully it really is the start of broader engagement with these histories.”
The City of Melbourne will devote $ 155,000 constructing the memorial.
Subjects: history, neighborhood-and-society, indigenous-aboriginal-and-torres-strait-islander, unrest-conflict-and-war, local-government, melbourne-3000, tas