Mokare at watch thanks to artists

Talitha WolfeAlbany Advertiser

Renowned as the bridge between two cultures, Mokare will stand tall overlooking Albany’s town square in the latest art installation to celebrate local Noongar culture.

As a precursor to the 10th anniversary of the national apology to the Stolen Generation, local artist Michael Cummings and urban artist Glenn Hegedus have collaborated to depict Mokare standing in between Mt Melville and Mt Clarence — known as the estate of Mokare.

The mural will cover the temporary hoarding surrounding the construction site at the library.

Mokare has been most commonly known for the role he played in the peaceful coexistence between the Noongar people and the first European settlers.

“It isn’t the interaction of him as a guide with non-indigenous people, it’s him as an actual estate owner,” Cummings said.

“Mt Melville to the left of Mokare in the mural is also known as Kardaup (Place of the Goanna), known for the Dreaming of the Goanna which began its coastal walkabout from Albany up the coast past Denmark, Perth, Geraldton and further north as far as Kununurra and returns back to Albany to rest in Mt Melville.

“On the right side of Mokare is Mt Clarence where the Owl and the Crow stands guard over the lands of the creator spirit.”

The project has been a partnership with Albany Youth Support Association and the City of Albany, and has engaged young people aged 10-25 during the two-week process.

“Through involving children and young people into the painting, it will generate recognition from non-indigenous participants and renewal for indigenous peoples of the importance of the stories associated to the mountainous sites, also known as Menang Bodja (Menang land),” Cummings said.

“Not a lot of people understand who Mokare was culturally.”

With final youth workshops wrapping up this afternoon, the mural is expected to be complete by the end of today.

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