Julianne Wade

Julianne Wade

#Balga Koort

PERTH, AUSTRALIA

Julianne Wade is a Whadjuk Noongar artist who uses her art to bring positive change through painting and community engagement. Her artwork emphasizes the significance of Country and Dreamtime stories.

The word Balga is a Nyoongar word, ‘bal’ meaning ‘they, them, and others,’ and ‘ga’ meaning connected, linked, or in possession of. When you view the Balga from afar it resembles a person holding a spear. When you touch the Balga there is a presence of pulling you nearer. You can feel its vibrations pulsing when you connect with it. There are many different stages of the Balga. The tree grows and develops very slowly, and the life span of a tree is around 600+ years. The same could be said for a journey of healing – a process that needs time. This concept inspired me in creating my artwork concept for Montario Quarter – a project in which one the main themes is healing and restoration. Balgas are an important tree for many reasons, one of these being a food and nourishment source. The Balga also provides resources to make traditional tools from the timber and resin. Balga is also used in our smoking ceremonies, which represent a time of cleansing for our people. This tree is significant to our culture, Country, and people. -Julianne Wade

This sculpture pays tribute to the Balga tree's grandeur—a natural conduit that channels life-sustaining nutrients from the soil and air. Similar to a heart pumping life through our veins, this sculpture embodies the soul of the Balga tree, the very "koort" (heart) that nurtures and sustains its existence. It was important for the artist and Artify Consulting to have his sculpture also capture the essence of unity, growth, and connection—a mosaic of experiences and stories weaving together, much like the concentric circles on the sculpture itself. It's an invitation to embrace the past, welcome the present, and invite tomorrow together.

UAP was involved in the project as part of the workshop team in Brisbane. The team meticulously crafted the base pattern of the artwork by sculpting polystyrene and coating it with plasticine. The final product was cast in aluminium and welded together. A black paint rub was applied on the surfaces to enhance the contrast and add depth, while some areas of the cast aluminium were polished to create reflective moments. UAP is proud to have brought Wade and Artify Consulting's incredible vision to life.

When you touch the Balga there is a presence of pulling you nearer. You can feel its vibrations pulsing when you connect with it.

Julianne Wade

Progress Images: Rachel See courtesy of UAP | Urban Art Projects

Image Credit: DevelopmentWA

#Services provided

Consultancy

Manufacturing

Digital Sculpting & 3D Modelling
Design Development Support
Pattern Making
Paint Shop
Lost Wax Casting & Sand Casting
Welding & Fabrication

Preservation

Installation

#Project summary

Creative

Julianne Wade

Artwork Title

Balga Koort

Project

Montario Quarter

Client

Development WA

Year

2023

Location

Perth, Australia

Build

UAP

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