Oct 27
Murals making a difference at Dubbo


Through the generosity of two Dubbo businesses, two walls of the Medical Imaging Department at the Dubbo Health Service are alive with colour. 

As part of the redevelopment of the Dubbo Health Service, the Medical Imaging Department was upgraded and expanded. 

Western NSW Local Health District (WNSLWHD) General Manager of Imaging Services, James Harvey said, “In March as COVID hit we opened the new Medical Imaging Department in Dubbo Hospital, this included two brand new, state of the art CT scanning machines among other new additions”.

“For some patients having a CT scan can be a daunting and stressful experience. To help patients feel more comfortable one of our radiographers, Tamika Mepham suggested we make the department more patient friendly, which is how we came to the two murals, so with a bit of hard work from Nathan Webeck, Assistant Chief Radiographer and the team at Dubbo they made it happen. 

“The murals were made possible thanks to Regional Australia Bank and Regand Park Early Childhood Education Centre, both based in Dubbo. 

One of the murals was designed and painted by local Dubbo Artist Nathan Peckham. The mural “Wilay” provides a calming and inviting environment and provides a great distraction for patients when entering the scanning rooms. 

Ben Luck from Regional Australia Bank, said “The mural is so impressive. It’s great that we are able to help support a local artist and our local hospital. I hope it will provide patients with a smile or something to think about while they’re here”. 

Artist Nathan Peckham said, “The possum represents the totem for the descendents of the people of the Wiradjuri nation, and the design of the background depicts the gathering of families and the close bonds held both within those families as well as the important connection between families.

The traditional version of our art used predominantly earthy colours, however we have to remember that the mediums our ancestors painted with, were derived from the plants and soil pigments that were readily available at the time. As the mediums have evolved, so has the art. So, while this is very much a contemporary piece, the ties to its traditional beginnings are still evident. Part of the story then becomes our ability to evolve, whilst still holding dear to the traditions of our ancestors.

It's a privilege to see my art used in such a meaningful way on such a scale, and I hope that it can help raise the spirits of all patients who need scans for years to come.”
 
Just down the hall you will be able to spot an African safari mural, sponsored by Regand Park Early Childhood Education Centre. Owner, Justine Richards said “we strive so hard to have a positive impact on our little people day in and day out, and this was another way we could do that for the wider community.”

Centre Director Gai-Maree Matthews added “being here and seeing it myself I believe even the adults will get some enjoyment out of it too. We find it really rewarding that we can be a part of something that will provide a level of comfort for people in what is sometimes a stressful time”, Ms Matthews said. 

The picture is part of the “Savannah Smile” series by Howard Robinson, who was also very generous in donating his artwork for the mural. 

Dubbo Assistant Chief Radiographer, Nathan Webeck said, “We are extremely grateful to Regional Australia Bank, Regand Park Early Childhood Education Centre and our fantastic artists who made this all possible.”

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Regional Australia Bank mural “Wilay”

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Regand Park Early Childhood Education Centre,  African safari mural​