New Adnate mural unveiled on Stewart Avenue featuring Aunty June Rose and her great-granddaughter

CONNECTED: Kumarah Green [centre] with her daughter Nayeli Green and grandmother Aunty June Rose, who are both depicted in Adnate’s new mural on Stewart Avenue. Picture: Jonathan Carroll Cameron Park’s Kumarah Green saysNewcastle’s latest piece of public art depictsthe “kindred spirit” shared between her 20-month-old daughter Nayeli and 82-year-oldgrandmother,Aunty June Rose.
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“My nan is very wise, but she has a very youthful spirit, very playful,” Ms Green said. “I hope people can see the connection they have.

“I hope nothing more than Nayeli grows up to be just like her.”

Revitalising Newcastle commissioned Melbourne artist Matt “Adnate” Lastto create a muralon the corner ofStewart Avenue andHunter Street. The25 metre long, 6.5 metre high wind wall forms part of the ongoing Newcastle Bus and Coach Interchange development.

CAPTURING TIME: Melbourne artist Matt Last, known as “Adnate”, and Aunty June Rose in front of her portrait. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

The artwork, unveiled on Sunday, islocatedjust a few blocks from another mural Mr Last completed in 2013,on Hannell Street.

Mr Lastsaid theconcept behind the new workwas“the passing on of culture, generation to generation”, as well as recognising the decades of volunteer service Ms Rose hasperformed as one of thefounders ofthe Awabakal Newcastle Aboriginal Co-Operative.

Ms Rose, of Fletcher,said the painting was “absolutely beautiful”.

“I’m surprised he managed to get something out of this old face,” she said.

The work incorporated elements from the art of Raymond Kelly Jnr, Ms Rose’sgrandson, with blues and greens representing the combination oflakes, rivers and ocean inthe Newcastle area.

UNVEILING: Members of Aunty June Rose’s family with Matt Last at the unveiling of the mural on Sunday. Picture: Jonathan Carroll

The word “Thirrilmun”means Brown Treecreeper, a type of woodpecker,in the language of the people of the Hunter Valley and Lake Macquarie.The birdis a women’s spiritual totem.

The main totemof the area, the eagle, is also depicted.

“It recognises the important role mothers and grandmothers play in our culture, the importance of women, aunties and sisters,” Ms Green said.

Many passersby remarked on Aunty JuneRose’s eyesinthe mural.

Her irisescontaina beach scene, in reference tothe birthplace of the82-year-old’s earliest-knownancestor, a woman named Mary.Ms Rose said records showshe was deliveredon Newcastle’sforeshorein 1812.

Related stories:

Wickham’s landmark mural of Aboriginal boy to be demolished and replicated on high-rise apartmentsBecause of her we can: Celebrating the Hunter’s Aboriginal women of influence

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