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Presented with RISING and Arts Centre Melbourne


Mookies Around The Waterhole


  • Nightly from sundown

Hamer Hall


  • Wheelchair Accessible


More details below

Hamer Hall’s iconic façade plays host to Ancestor spirits and celestial worlds in a large-scale projection work from Aunty Zeta Thomson (Wurundjeri/Yorta Yorta).
Mookies Around the Waterhole

For those in its radius during lockdown, Maree Clarke (Mutti Mutti/Yorta Yorta/BoonWurrung) and Mitch Mahoney’s (BoonWurrung/Barkinji) Spirit Eel projection Ancestral Memory was a symbol of solidarity and connection to a deeper timeline. Now, with Electric, another First Peoples story—Mookies Around the Waterhole—lights up Hamer Hall.

The work was created by esteemed Elder, artist, cultural teacher and advocate Aunty Zeta Thomson. She explains:

“‘Mookie’ means spirit in Yorta Yorta. In our culture, visitors would call out to the Mookies of the Ancestors as they walked through the bush announcing that they were coming on to Country. They would meet and gather at sacred waterholes for cultural business. After the ceremony the travellers would begin their journey across Country to the next place, ‘galyan woka ngana buraya moya’—‘a beautiful place far, far away’. This work teaches us to respect Country and honour our Ancestors. Its important to strongly represent Victorian Aboriginal culture for people to learn from and connect to.”

A version of this work was originally commissioned as a Melbourne Art Tram for RISING 2021. Now the sacred gathering congregates once more, with Aunty Zeta sharing connections to land and Ancestors, to the great rivers of Yorta Yorta and Wurundjeri counties and the stars that guide us in an animated new form on the façade of Hamer Hall and across the river at Flinders Street Station for Shadow Spirit.

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  • In association with Shadow Spirit and RISING. Curated by Kimberley Moulton. *Electric* is funded by the Victorian Government and Creative Victoria through the Melbourne City Revitalisation Fund.

Image Credits

Ancestral Memory by Maree Clark and Mitch Mahoney, 2021. RISING. VIDEO: Silky Jazz

Mookies Around the Waterhole by Aunty Zeta Thomson. Courtesy of the artist.

Ancestral Memory by Maree Clark and Mitch Mahoney, 2021. RISING. Photo: Eugene Hyland

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