The 'Black Saturday' bushfires were a series of bushfires that ignited across the Australian state of Victoria on and around Saturday, 7 February 2009. It was Australia's worst ever natural disaster. The fires occurred during extreme bushfire-weather conditions and resulted in Australia's highest ever loss of life from a bushfire: 173 people died and 414 were injured as a result of the fires.
For most women being part of the Lasting Memories Mosaic Group was a way of reconnecting to the area, friends and neighbours. As the months went by, the idea of creating a gift to the community together was born. The women wanted to artistically express their memories of what they had experienced. Creating a mosaic seat in the heart of St Andrews allowed the group to be 'in control' of building something from the ground up - a symbol of hope, recovery and renewal. All of their experiences and memories have been included into the seat design, which makes it so special. This mosaic seat is proudly positioned outside the St Andrews Hall, which is also the site for the St Andrews market held every Saturday throughout the year.
The Lasting Memories Mosaic group began this piece just after the Black Saturday fires in 2009. After the horrific fires ravaged through St Andrews and the surrounding areas, a group of bushfire affected ladies bravely came back to St Andrews to begin their healing in an artistic way. Each woman created something beautiful and meaningful, using remnants of crockery, glass, tiles and bricks salvaged from their own properties. This artworks identifies who they are and tells their personal 'life journey' and family heritage and memories of what they had experienced before, during and beyond Black Saturday. It is also an expression of their love for the St. Andrews area and the nature and people within it.
A large concrete seat in the style of an organic chaise lounge covered in mosaic (broken tiles, glass, crockery and ceramics of all shapes and colour). The pieces have been placed to form pictures, words and patterns that tell and recount stories and memories of reflection, hope and love of a group of people who experienced the Black Saturday bushfires. (Click on links to view details of the seat)