Melbourne Daily Photo

Hello, I created this blog because Melbourne is my city and I want people to see what a beautiful place it is. So come with me on a journey of discovery as we traverse the dining precincts, the culture, the laneways and hidden gems that make Melbourne marvellous.




Waltzing Australia

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Gayip

The Travellers

Gayip is one of the figures of "The Travellers", an artwork across Sandridge Bridge which tells the story of our original Indigenous inhabitants and the emmigrants who came later. There are ten figures in all and each figures represents a period of migration to Australia.

There are more than 3.7 kms of stainless steel (4,455 pieces) in this artwork and the average weight of each figure is 2,307 kg. The heaviest figure weighs a mighty 7,701 kgs!


The First Figure - Gayip
Above: 1. Gayip – The Aboriginal Period
This amazing piece of sculptured artwork was designed with the assistance of Indigenous artist Mandy Nicholson.

Mandy was born in Healesville in 1975 and is of the Woi wurrrung language group of the Wurundjeri-willam clan of the Kulin Nation of people from Melbourne. When she was in Year 12 she started drawing what she termed "Aboriginal art". Her first solo exhibition was in 2001 and her work "Welcome to Melbourne" was projected around Manchester Stadium during the Closing Ceremony of the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games. You can read more about Mandy HERE.

The Aboriginal Period
Aboriginal people settled in Australia at times estimated as 50,000 to 70,000 years ago, although many claim to have always been here. Tasmania separated from the mainland about 12,000 years ago and Torres Strait Islanders came over from Paua about 3,000 years ago. Apart from the TSI who practiced garden agriculture, Aborigines were hunter gatherers. The Aboriginal population in 1788 has been estimated as being between 250,000 and 750,000. There were no permanent settlements but control over traditional lands was recognised.

The Meaning of Gayip
Gayip is the Woiwurrung word for "Corroboree". Corroboree is the English word for the Aboriginal word Caribberie.

In earlier times Gayip involved an inter-clan gathering of related Aboriginal groups who used this time to advance their own spirituality, peace and unity through such means as:
Initiation ceremonies, storytelling, dancing and singing, the rekindling of friendships and relationships formed, trading goods, arranging marriages, settling disputes and the offering of support in times of sorrow or adversity


Above: Gayip - front view

Gayip stands in Southbank, and you can see Queens Bridge (1889) in the background.


Today's quote: We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love... and then we return home ~ Australian Aboriginal proverb.

10 comments:

Lois said...

Beautiful artwork and fascinating information about the Aboriginal people. I love that proverb too!

Rob and Mandy said...

Amazing!

Jacob said...

This is wonderful! So impressive. So important because it is right to honor the original inhabitants who, as I recall, were not always treated with respect!

Beautiful work and I really appreciated your commentary.

Nice to hear from you. I'm sorry I haven't been by for awhile, but I simply can't keep up with all the blogs that I should keep up with!

With regard to your request: Yes, of course you may use the photo. It would be nice if you'd link to Cedar Key DP. Let me know how you put it to use...I'd be interested in seeing that.

Best wishes to you and yours!

diane b said...

Great sculpture

brattcat said...

Such a rich post.

brattcat said...

Aw, BlossomFlowerGirl, I love your question. In the US, on the 2nd of February, there is a silly tradition of watching for the groundhog (sometimes called a gopher, a rather large rodent like creature). If the groundhog comes out of its den and sees its shadow, there will be another six weeks of winter. If the groundhog does not see its shadow, winter will end more quickly. In Vermont, the chance of winter ending even in six weeks is so remote it's laughable.

brattcat said...

Please amend the "gopher" to "woodchuck." Sorry to be confusing.

Birdman said...

Very informative post this morning. Interesting.

Halcyon said...

A really interesting piece. I rather like it.

J Bar said...

Terrific sculpture.

Melbourne Daily Photo

Hello, I created this blog because Melbourne is my city and I want people to see what a beautiful place it is. So come with me on a journey of discovery as we traverse the dining precincts, the culture, the laneways and hidden gems that make Melbourne marvellous.