Saturday, April 13, 2024

Melbourne’s newest artwork a walk down memory lane

Melbourne’s rich history has been captured in the latest public art commission from the City of Melbourne. The initiative is installing iconic and meaningful works around Carlton’s University Square – including a replica of the Corkman Hotel façade.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the work, titled Distant Things Appear Suddenly Near, has been developed by Irish artist Sean Lynch following long-term and intensive engagement with the site. 

“Sean Lynch’s installation is literally like walking down Melbourne’s memory lane – his work is a stunning visual reminder of our city’s past,” the Lord Mayor said. 

“Public art is key to Melbourne’s identity as Australia’s culture destination, stimulating domestic and international visitation to our city. 

“The Corkman Hotel replica is a stark reminder of a recent loss to our city, just a short walk from where it once stood. I encourage everyone to visit the installation and learn a little about our history while enjoying our city’s latest artwork.” 

Sean Lynch said his work speaks to the power of objects to revive memories and understandings of place. 

“Distant Things Appear Suddenly Near places an emphasis on objects and understandings of spaces that have been marginalised in the continued growth of the contemporary city,” Mr Lynch said. 

“These items now return to the public arena to speak again and contribute to the nature of the place we share and inhabit.” 

Creative Melbourne portfolio lead, Councillor Jamal Hakim said the artwork incorporates compelling elements of the city’s past.  

“This artwork demonstrates that our history is not forgotten by making use of unique objects from our city’s collection,” Cr Hakim said.  

“It includes elements of Hossein Valamanesh’s Faultline, a public artwork in storage since the mid-2000s, along with vintage lamp posts and bollards – transporting us back in time.” 

“Sean Lynch has extensively researched the site and created an immersive experience – visitors can listen to an accompanying voiceover on their own devices as they explore the space.” 

Mark Neilsen, Director of Set Square Productions, which constructed much of the artwork, said public art plays a vital role in building connected communities. 

“It’s great to be a part of a City of Melbourne initiative that’s encouraging people back into the outdoors, by providing an opportunity to experience this thought-provoking artwork.” Mr Neilsen said. 

“Investing in public artwork stimulates the local economy and encourages companies like ours to seek collaborations with artists, councils and creative thinkers to reinvigorate urban spaces.” 

The resources compiled throughout the artist’s research will be exhibited at City Gallery in 2022. 

The artwork has been produced under Stage One of the University Square Master Plan and will be in place for a period of 18 months. 

Latest Articles