The Drysdale community has welcomed the installation of the
relocatable I AM sculpture to Peninsula Drive, outside the Potato Shed.
The public artwork, at more than two metres tall, celebrates people who have
a lived experience with disability and raises of awareness of their
experiences. I AM is inspired by political and pop culture statements such
as the 1968 Memphis black sanitation workers’ slogan “I AM a man”, and Helen
Reddy’s 1971 anthem “I AM woman.”
The statue now sits across from the newly opened North BellarineAquatic Centre just in time for summer after being craned in from Pakington
Street, where it’s been located since February.
location is especially important as it was at the nearby SpringDaleNeighbourhood Centre that the idea for an artwork recognising people living
with a disability was dreamed up by the Geelong and Bellarine Peer Action Group
from VALiD (Victorian Advocacy League for Individuals with Disability).
The City commissioned Mark Cuthbertson with
artist-collaborators Robert Croft, Hannah Wilkinson, Christian Den Besten and
George Macaronis to develop the large-scale work, receiving more than 85
contributions from the community.
I AM was delivered in partnership with VALiD and
Geelong-based ArtGusto, and funded by the Victorian Government through the
Community Support Fund.
Alison Marchant MP - Member for Bellarine
It is incredible to have the I AM sculpture accessible to the Drysdale and
wider Bellarine community; near the SpringDale Neighbourhood Centre where the
idea for the artwork was created.
This sculpture represents the important message
of celebrating and supporting people with lived experience of disability as
well as raising awareness of their experiences and contributions to our
Mayor Trent Sullivan
The public artwork will stand outside the Potato Shed over the next 12 months.
AM needs to be seen to be believed - each
letter in the sculpture weighs around four tonnes and is inlaid with text-based
works of the contributing community members.
The statue recognises the empowerment of
diversity and gives a voice to people with a lived experience of disability.
Councillor Elise Wilkinson - Bellarine Ward
The interactive installation had previously been installed outside Geelong West
Town Hall, at the Geelong Waterfront and in Lara’s Austin Park.
By being relocatable, I AM is widely
accessible to the community and its message is conveyed to a bigger audience.
The sculpture encourages community members to
demonstrate their support for the community by being a part of the work and
positioning themselves within or taking photos using the hashtag #IAMGeelong.