Dec 22
Weaving wellbeing project installed at Orange health service

The finishing touches are being put to a new weaving installation at Orange Health Service. Visitors and staff at the cafeteria will notice a woven garden of Fauna and Flora of the Central West installed in the courtyard.

These artworks were designed and created through community workshops in Orange and Condobolin. The design theme presents, in particular, plants and animals significant to indigenous people.

Plants include the bush cucumber, gooseberry, kurrajong, pigweed, plantain, pop saltbush and the yam together with the frog, echidna, goanna, kangaroo, platypus, yellow belly fish, turtle and the wedge tailed eagle.

The community workshops led by artists Gabriella Hegyes and Bev Coe offered community members an opportunity to exchange ideas, knowledge and techniques. The aim was to create a community public art project incorporating non traditional techniques with traditional Aboriginal woven elements to create an installation for the courtyard of the new hospital.

Artists worked together with community members, mental health staff and consumers to create the15 sculptures – a powerful and visible presence in the Health Service of the community, Aboriginal people and people with mental illness.

Upon completing the installation Gabriella Hegyes, a principal artist on the Weaving Wellbeing project said that patients, visitors, staff, including doctors, nurses, cleaners, kitchen staff and maintenance people already are in love with them.

“We were asked so many questions on the day of the installation about what the project is all about, what are they made out of, how it was made and who made them. Several of our key volunteer artists spent all day explaining it all and received wonderful comments. People were intrigued by the medium and textile techniques we used!” Ms Hegyes said.

Meg Simpson, Chair Orange Health Service - Arts and Health Committee is looking forward to the gathering of all the artists.

 “These dedicated artists and community members from the region, in particular Mary Douglas, Aileen Francis, Amanda Hammond, Jillian Trudgen, Judy O’Neill and Val French have worked tirelessly to create these beautiful, unique public artworks. I’m sure they will be very proud to see their work installed in the new hospital. Everyone who comes to the Hospital for years to come will, I’m sure, be thankful for the wonderful gift they have given to the community.” Ms Simpson said.