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Garden for Forgotten Peoples | Origin of Ideas |







Garden for Forgotten Peoples

Garden for Forgotten People began at a women's correctional centre in Sydney. Developed in collaboration with inmates from a range of cultures.

Unity Garden, Dillwynia cc
By Dale Kift,
Probation and Parole Officer

The Unity Garden at Dillwynia Correctional Centre is beginning to take shape, as a living thing it will grow and change over the coming years.

The idea for a contemporary and symbolic garden began in 1997 when Elizabeth Day, a Creative Arts Teacher based at Long Bay had an idea for a garden at the Industrial Training Centre (ITC).

The idea for a garden at Long Bay had to be placed on hold as the original site was targeted for re-development. Luckily, some years later, Luke Grant, Senior Assistant Commissioner Inmate Services, approved the commence-ment of another garden project at the Dillwynia Correctional Centre.

Marilyn Wright, General Manager, Dillwynia CC, suggested a site and the name “Unity Garden”, signifying the bringing together of cultures. The idea of a Unity Garden would be keeping with the original concept of Dillwynia. Ms Wright was quick to see an opportunity to engage offenders in a group activity that would enhance their environment and leave a legacy for the women who would later arrive at Dillwynia.

Elizabeth Day designed a garden of interconnecting and intersecting pathways, culminating in a “Celtic knot” design, to allow for a variety of garden spaces to be developed. In this way, themes of unity and distinctness of identity characterised the garden. As Elizabeth saw it, “[The garden] was a place where cultures could meet and connect and learn from each other, where cultures could be unified in a project that recognised cultural differences.”

Currently the garden comprises a central frangipani emblem, a traditional Fijian icon, planted with yellow day lillies, with pink and white-coloured lilies at the centre and surrounded by gardenias, roses, birds of paradise and sunflowers. Vietnamese and Chinese women have planted their traditional vegetables and Aboriginal women have incorporated a rainbow serpent, a turtle and a goanna in dot art patterns of small, light-coloured pebbles and miniature succulents.

The pathways running through the garden are reminiscent of animal tracks which Elizabeth described as “recording the past and looking to the future”.
By channelling the expressive physical energy of the women at Dillwynia a beautiful garden has been created that is available for the wider group to share.

Two photos
Dillwynia flower








The Origin of Ideas

Australia Council Window

Dock Works
Hobart Summer Festival
curated by Michael Edwards

Photofile #78
The Archive Issue
edited by Elvis Richardson & Sarah Goffman

this work was supported and developed during a residency at Banff Center for the Arts

The Origin of Ideas
works in progress
Banff Center for the Arts

THE ORIGIN OF IDEAS exhibition and archive began as a way to examine the processes of creativity itself, exploring the intimate reality of how ideas come into being and exist as mobile changing living entities. The exhibition has proposed to look at visual and aural works across many spheres and disciplines, investigating the ways in which ideas are interwoven and cross- pollinating. It aims to look at links between art, architecture, science and technology which in a final evolution will be mapped. A selection of important artists and thinkers across genders and cultures are chosen which will demonstrate the very processes of the generation of ideas.

The Origin of Ideas
works in progress
Banff Center for the Arts

This Project has been supported by Artspace Sydney, Museum of Contemporary Art Sydney and The University of Western Sydney whre Elizabeth Day is currently a Creative Arts Doctorate Candidate