At an ancient meeting place on the Birrarung’s (Yarra River) banks, you’ll find the sky’s stories mirrored by a giant glowing eel and hundreds of lanterns floating on the river’s tide.
It’s Reconciliation Week and while the festival is paused for now, in the spirit of amplifying First Peoples voices, The Rivers Sing will continue to echo through the skies at sunset and the Birrarung will light up each night with Wandering Stars and Ancestral Memory.
A small symbol of solidarity to our city in lockdown and the traditional owners who continue to care for it. We ask that you don’t travel to the works, but consider experiencing them if you are exercising within 5km of your home.
When you look up at night, the stars and sky contain ancient, unifying stories. For Wandering Stars, those lessons materialise on the Birrarung (Yarra River) as an undulating, over 200-metre-long, glowing eel skeleton.
The installation illuminates the eel’s astonishing migratory journey from local inland waterways to the deepest depths of the Coral Sea and features an enigmatic soundscape; a full lunar cycle of 28 incandescent moons rising from the river; tangles of glowing glass eels; and hundreds of floating lanterns made by the community, under the supervision of Liverpool’s internationally exhibited, public-art makers The Lantern Company.
As you wander along riverbanks with family and friends—feasting on fire-roasted snacks from RISING’s kitchens in Birrarung Marr—you’ll connect with First Peoples knowledge of the land, sea, sky and river on which we all live.
“Working on Wandering Stars has been a truly amazing journey of creative discovery. The research has covered astronomy, astrophysics, First Peoples aquaculture systems and cosmic creation stories from all over the world. From the infinite expanse of the skies above, to the tiniest, most delicate and star like bones making up the eel's skeletal structure, the whole project’s development has been fascinating.”