On Wednesday June 4th International Education Services (IES) located at 495 Boundary Street Spring Hill, brought together a large network of educators, artists and supporters to officially launch their new international high school program amidst a fabulous new public artwork. The large mural on the face of the building is a collaboration between two artists Sheep Shen from Shanghai and Matt Adnate from Melbourne and was undertaken as part of the 2019 Brisbane Street Art Festival.
One of the subjects of the mural was Noni Eather who travelled down from the Northern Territory to participate in the event.
As Noni said at the launch:
This mural celebrates the multicultural identity of IES College, which operates from within the building on which the mural is painted. It also honours the Campfire Group - a collective of indigenous and other Australian artists who played a significant role in establishing Brisbane as an important art centre in the 1990s and operated from a studio/house in nearby Torrington Street from 1990 until 1995. This space was also a home for me and my sisters Alice and Grace, with our Father and the artists associated with Campfire Group who we identified with and called our extended families.
For the part of Matt’s piece of my younger self he has referenced an artwork created by my father Michael Eather which includes an enlarged photographic image of me Shooshing .. urging people to be quiet and listen ... to look closer ... It conjures up different things for different people…
During the 19th century not very long ago…our First Nations were subject to a curfew and were prohibited from crossing over Boundary Street to the city after a certain time. For me I think that this is one important story that needs to be shared and taught to create further understanding.
As I’ve been learning more of IES college and witnessing the importance and approach to building respectful relationships amongst each other, seeing the services that IES provide, and learning more of the values the college represents I’m reminded of my time growing up around Campfire Group and our extended families. I see this place being a safe and important space to teach each other for the betterment of our future generations.
For some now years now, IES college have been incredibly proactive in the promotion of Indigenous art and stories as an integral fabric to their educational philosophy. This public statement takes it to another level, which will be enjoyed by local residents, businesses & visitors to the vibrant Spring Hill education precinct.