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History of Australia Mural

Prospect Mural Group

About the artist

An extraordinarily detailed and striking mural that speaks of the complex history of Australia. The mural has received national and international recognition as a mural work of significance. From the mural group 'This has been our biggest mural project to date, and has achieved the greatest public response.' The preparation time was about three years, almost from the formation of the Mural Group in 1978.

Painting the mural took four months, working three afternoons a week, and the community participation was maintained at a high level throughout this period. The image was painted as a black and white half tone drawing.

The upper section is a pictorial history of White Australia since European settlement in 1788. Highly symbolic events and processes have been used in the image in order to make as full a statement as possible within the dimensions of the wall. Underlying this, in the bottom section, is a cross section of the earth which functions in a number of ways.

Geological strata dipping and rising are patterned with Aboriginal motifs, thereby the physical structure of the land is identified with the indigenous culture which has been submerged under white occupation but remains rich in its own imagery. One of the strata bands is the Serpent; it is identified by a slight colour shift towards a warm hue, and re-emerges towards a more positive regeneration in the conclusion of the mural.


Prospect Mural Group - formed in November 1978 by nine residents who shared a desire to paint murals within the City of Prospect Area. Trish McLaine, Ann Newmarch, David Kerr, Julie Fife, Chris Bryant, Brian Medlin, Carol Moore. Funding from Community Arts Board and Visual Arts board of the Australia Council, and the SA Department of the Arts.

Artwork Location

194 Prospect Rd, Prospect SA 5082, Australia

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