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Tjilbruke story inspires Allan Sumner to create Kingston Park artwork

Callan Morse -

South Australia’s Kingston Park has become home to the City of Holdfast Bay’s newest Indigenous art instillation.

Located on the northern side of the Kingston Park kiosk, the four decorative panels act as a partition between the kiosk’s alfresco area and the caravan park next door.

The intricate design that has been laser cut into the Corten steel was designed by longtime Indigenous artist Allan Sumner, who took inspiration from the culturally significant Tjilbruke Spring, located just a stone’s throw from the kiosk site.

Mr Sumner's artwork. (Image: City of Holdfast Bay)

“The theme for me was definitely Tjilbruke as this is one of Tjilbruke’s campsites and the other thing that connected for me was using the elements too - fire, earth, sky and water,” Mr Sumner said.

“I just wanted to keep it really coastal and make sure we have the theme there with Tjilbruke, family and community that would have been down here.

“Many Aboriginal communities would have been down this way, fishing and hunting and that sort of thing.”

Mr Sumner was inspired by the nearby Tjilbruke Spring when designing the artwork. (Image: City of Holdfast Bay)

Located on the northern side of the kiosk, the morning light shines through the design, casting shadows across a long bench seat and onto the ground.

Mr Sumner said says seeing his artwork in place and as part of the landscape at Kingston Park fills him with pride.

“From a Kaurna point of view, to have a cultural footprint on the ground here at Kingston Park is something that we’ve wanted for a very long time and that makes me very proud, absolutely,” he said.

Shadows made by Mr Sumner's artwork. (Image: City of Holdfast Bay)

Mr Sumner is the artist behind the widely recognised On Kaurna Land shop front stickers and the acknowledgement which appears on the front of The City of Holdfast Bay Council’s Our Place magazine.

Beginning work as an artist in 2008, he said the story always comes first when creating a piece of work.

“I always try and think about the area, the people that lived in that area, the stories and the creation stories connected to that area,” he said.

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