Art Gallery and Kings Park

Trip Start Mar 14, 2006
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Trip End Mar 15, 2007


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Friday, November 17, 2006

finally freed from confinement from my bites, I was able to do some exploring.  I caught the bus to Gendalough train station where I caught the train to Perth Station and walked around a bit before deciding to go to the Art Gallery first and to King's Park later.  Had a delicious lunch at the Art Gallery (Veggie Panini sort of thing).  The Art Gallery was fascinating and I saw a lot of both Aboriginal and Settler art. 
 
While I was going through the Aboriginal exhibit I was moved by the sadness of the Lost Generation art; of people taken from their land and put onto reserves or schooled far away from their homes; in places where their honour was gone and the assumption was that they were drunkards and stupid.  Where death by suicide is sometimes the only way out.  There were some school children who were doing a tour.   While it was interesting, it was very white
 
The art of the Settlers was much as in other places but the overpowering size of the land impressed me greatly.  There were huge trees and people, animals and residences appearing very small.  In some the people appeared more than life sized and the landscape was very small.  Interesting commentary on what was considered most important by the artist. 
 
I think my favorite one was a painting done by Hans Heysen. called "Droving into the Light".  He was particularly recognized for his watercolours of the Australian bush and won the Wynne Prize for landscape painting a record nine times.  There was a time, now fast disappearing, when no Australian middle class home was without its reproduction of a Heysen gum trees painting with a name like 'Droving into the Light' or 'The Roadside Gum'. He lived and painted in and around a small community called Hahndorf, in South Australia, which I will be visiting during my time there. 
 
For King's Park I took the Blue CAT bus to an area opposite the Swan River and then had to climb about 255 stairs to the bottom of King's Park.  Amazingly beautiful.  Saw Morton Bay Fig trees that were SO large.  The trunks just fascinated me as they seem to be like something supernatural or fictional.  The steps took rather a lot out of me as I had not been terribly active for a few days and I was a bit worried about my foot, still with an open wound on it but all was well other than it took me about half an hour to climb the stairs.  At the top I had quite a good view of the city before walking into the park through an avenue of trees.  These all had names on them of people who were part of the Perth Centenary committee and there must have been a whole lot of them as it was a very long line of trees indeed.
 
Overlooking the River, there is a beautiful but sad memorial to those folks killed in the Bali bombings in 2002.  It has a circular piece of metal on stone, a stone plinth or obelisk, and a series of stone walls.  I could not resist taking photos from a number of angles.  Part of the memorial reads "In the shadow of our sorrows we find the light, with the dawn comes hope, with the setting sun, comes hope."  On the metal plaque it says "Through the seasons of this land we remember them" On the stone walls it says "We honour the endurance of those who survived." "May you find serenity in this sacred place".  It was very moving. 
 
I walked up to the King's Park Botanic Gardens and was going to go through but my foot was beginning to bother me and I found there was a tour going tomorrow so will go back for that. 
 
I then caught the Airport bus (busses are free in the Central Business District) back to a CAT bus which took me to the train and back to Paramatta Road.  Well, I caught the wrong train and went beyond my station but that was no problem, just got off and caught the next one back.  Sometime that day I also lost my beloved Tilley Hat.  
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