Jon Stanhope has the thrilling news that Gungahlin’s cherished statue of Alexander the Bunyip (brought about in some part by RiotACT readers) has been officially unveiled (not that we were invited mind you).
The artwork, A is for Alexander, B is for Bunyip, C is for Canberra, by artist Anne Ross was commissioned by the ACT Government for Gungahlin’s $3.8 million town park, which was completed last month.
The sculpture draws inspiration from Michael Salmon’s 1970’s book, The Monster that Ate Canberra, which tells the story of a short-sighted and hungry Bunyip who mistakes Canberra’s national institutions and landmarks for food.
The artwork includes miniature versions of the National Library, Science Museum and Telstra Tower which are among the iconic buildings eaten by the Bunyip throughout the book.
Chief Minister Jon Stanhope said the book was well-known to many Canberrans during the 1970s and 80s.
“The artwork is modelled on the popular children’s book character, Alexander Bunyip, who sparked the imagination of countless children who grew up reading the book, The Monster that Ate Canberra,”
Mr Stanhope said. “The sculpture is a wonderful addition to Gungahlin’s new town park and highlights the importance of literacy and imagination and of playfulness and freedom of thought.”
The idea for the sculpture was first raised by the President of the Gungahlin Community Council, Mr Alan Kerlin, who received support from the community for the proposal.
Does this mean we should start calling Gunghettes “Bunyips” too?
[Anyone with a pic wanting to send it through to firstname.lastname@example.org would be appreciated]
UPDATE: Thanks to Anni for sending in the pic, and to Gungahlin Al for the one at the top with the artist on the left and the author on the right.