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Indigenous Artwork Mural for Maitland Private Hospital

In a culmination of workshops and community consultation, Maitland Private Hospital has unveiled a new Aboriginal artwork for the hospital.

The vibrantly coloured artwork mural shares the country and culture of the Wonnarua Nation, bringing a welcome to all, while acknowledging the Wonnarua as traditional custodians of the land and the footprint on country of Maitland Private Hospital.

Local Indigenous artist, Saretta Fielding, produced the significant artwork over a number of months. “It was important for us to bring together representatives from the Hospital, and representatives from the Wonnarua people, to work together on concepts and ideas for the mural,” says Fielding. “We had some delays due to COVID, so we are happy to finally see it all come together.”

Mindaribba Local Aboriginal Land Council and Fielding hosted the art project workshops, where Aboriginal Elders, local families and hospital staff participated in storytelling through Aboriginal symbolism and art techniques. Through art, participants shared their own experience of living on Wonnarua country. Fielding incorporated concept and design elements from this storytelling in to the final art mural.

Central to the design is a gathering circle to depict the coming together as a community - inclusive of the Wonnarua people, Maitland Private Hospital and the wider community. The artwork also includes references to the Wonnarua totem – the Wedge-tail Eagle; significant sacred site – Mount Yengo, the birthplace of Biami (God Creator); and captures the diverse beauty of the Wonnarua landscape.

Maitland Private Hospital CEO, Peter Cizzio, welcomes the addition of such a special artwork to the exterior of the building. “The artwork is fantastic,” says Cizzio. “We know it’s location at the front entrance to the Hospital will play an important role in acknowledging and welcoming the Wonnarua and wider community to this Hospital.”