The Yarralea Children's Centre has been an important part of the Alphington community for decades.
The Centre celebrated its 60th birthday in 2019 and to mark the occasion, I was commissioned to make a mosaic work involving the children, teachers and the parent community. Families donated pre-loved crockery, tiles and other ceramics and this material was used in the work. We created four panels depicting nature scenes from the Darebin Creek and surrounds where the children have their weekly bush kinder sessions. The approach used in creating the work respects the Centre's strong emphasis on nature and integrating it into the lives of children as they play and learn. In making the work we acknowledged the fact that indigenous culture and respect is integral to the philosophy of the Centre. Materials used included upcycled crockery, remnant tiles and ceramics donated from tile stores or renovations. Children aged 3-5, plus teachers came to five different sessions. Pieces were made on mesh and left to dry before being integrated into the work. Children chose to depict trees, flowers, insects, worms, people, birds and nature scenes.
It was great thrill to do this project, as I love working with children and always marvel at the enthusiastic way they work in mosaic. I also enjoy working with communities in a sustainable way. A celebration to unveil the work was held on 17 November 2019.
Please check the Facebook page for updates and close ups of some of the items the children made for the mosaic panels. Yarralea is a not-for-profit, stand-alone community Children's Centre.