Edinburgh Gardens Plinth Project – Yarra City Council

The ‘Unsung Hero’ has been granted the honour of sitting atop the plinth in Edinburgh Gardens in August for 2 years.

Let us put the earthworm on the plinth

The plinth is the historical site for the revered, those deemed worthy to respect, remember and admire; the coloniser, and the war hero. Meanwhile the earthworm is ignored. Silently in darkness it goes about its business, doing the important and under-rated work of creating healthy soil. Even those white men on plinths have the worm to thank for their strength and energy … in some part. The earthworm is one of the hardest working and most unrecognised members of our biotic community. It is time to honour the earthworm. Let us raise the status of the worm with this art object and give it the heroes honour that it deserves. All hail the earthworm. Earthworms, afterall, turn decaying matter into nutrients, while their burrows bring water and air deep under ground providing the right conditions for plant root growth. The presence of these workers in soil is to be valued, as they are busily reconstituting waste into plant production for food and air. The ‘unsung hero’ is a symbolic recognition of the tremendous transfer of energy undertaken by these humble animals, in our service and as part of a complex community of biological life. 

The engagement between the plinth as a cultural structure and the placement of the humble earthworm playfully deconstructs the plinth cannon and has a depth of conviction in its intention. It is a reminder that we are part of earth systems and that the labourers within these biotic communities deserve to be honoured and remembered. Urban spaces are often where the decision makers, creators and planners of our complex systems exist and therefore an important place to reconnect with the essential knowledge of ecological cycles. Circular and ecological thinking in the way we may create, make and act, will serve us well in building a positive future world. 

  • The Unsung Hero / 2019 / Under construction / Conceptual image by Kathy Holowko
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Tricky Traps made an appearance at Healsville Santuary

 

This installation uses wool to show the artistry of a spiders web. The ‘spiders dining table’ is a

great way to show the tricky ways that these creatures use to find food while the arts based activities

help children think about the interconnected web of living creatures. This work has been installed for

the Learning Experiences team and aims to use arts based learning for ecology as part of their schools program.

 

  • Healsville Santuary / 2019 / Photographs by Jess Kenway & Kathy Holowko