The Northern Rivers is listed in the top 35 of the world’s biodiversity hotspots and recognising the importance of this Earth Learning have funded the Ages of the Tweed mural which was recently completed on the levee wall on the Murwillumbah riverside.
‘The project began in 2016 to create Riverside “Open Air Art-Walk”,’ said Marion Riordan from Murwillumbah based not-for-profit, Earth Learning.
‘The imagery depicts the deep history of the Northern Rivers environmental region. It begins when life first evolved from under the oceans to live on land at 300 million years ago. It then continues through the ages depicting the evolution of significant flora and fauna of the Wollumbin Caldera region – also known as Australia’s “Green Cauldron”.’
The mural is about 150m in length with an average height of 1.5m and has taken around six years to complete.
‘The artwork was designed and managed by Erwin Weber and began with the collaboration of many volunteers in 2016,’ explained Marion.
‘The majority of the mural was then completed in the last two years by Erwin Weber and professional artist Turiya Bruce with many areas being reworked and improved after graffiti damage.’
Following the flood
Artist Turiya Bruce told The Echo ‘I commenced the wall the day of the last big flood in Murwillumbah. The town was a mess for many months after, but what I had painted stood without damage.’
‘Danielle Sussyer created our Originie art aspects. Artists included Anthony Binder and Phil Joster. David Adams helped the concept design with Erwin Weber. Thank you also to Graham who housed our paint and was a great support.
‘We kept working along the wall upgrading and completing the vision sometimes with up ten people painting at once! It was a pleasure to work with Earth Learning in realising their vision,’ she said.
Importance of the region
‘Earth Learning wanted to teach people about the significance of the natural environment of this region,’ said Marion.
‘It is recognised as one of the worlds top 35 biodiversity hotspots. Its flora, fauna and landscapes link back to the Great Southern Land of Gondwana and many species have survived f unchanged from millions of years ago,’ she said.
‘The Tweed (and surrounds) now acts as a “Climate Refuge” for many plants and animals that were once widespread but have died out due to a drying climate and human’s (white mans) invasive practices.’
‘Funding was supplied by Murwillumbah RSL, ITV and in particular small business owner Warren Stratton of the Scandinavian Cone Company who made a generous donation in 2017 which allowed EL to hire professional artist Turiya Bruce to complete the mural.
Positioned on the levee wall next to the Tweed River as it runs through the town of Murwillumbah it is a wonderful opportunity to take a beautiful riverside stroll with Mt Warning (Wollumbin) as a backdrop.
Earth Learning has provided a lively, easy-to-follow interpretative guide to accompany your walk and take you ‘back into deep time on your mobile as you take in this wonderful art piece,’ said Marion.
♦ You can see more artwork by Turiya Bruce online here.