Save the historic Heidelberg Artists' Trail!

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Recently, residents in Banyule learned about Banyule City Council’s consideration of removing signs depicting reproductions of many local, significant and historic works of art created by the artists from the Heidelberg School of Artists along the Heidelberg Artists’ Trail. (Angst over Arts Trail, November 2017, Heidelberg Leader).  

The Heidelberg Artists' Trail is a trail that includes a series of 57 explanatory signs and boards situated in locations frequented by artists of the Heidelberg School. The signs display reproductions and descriptions of some of the most famous paintings many of which are popular with school groups who have an interest in the arts and the natural environment. The trail winds for approximately 40 km through much of Jagajaga, including the municipalities of Banyule, Nillumbik and Manningham, through to the Yarra Valley and the Dandenong Ranges.  The trail also extends onto land operated by Parks Victoria.

Many of these significant works are held in the National Gallery but aren’t necessarily on display.  Works such as ‘A Bright Winter’s Morning’ (as shown above) is one such example.  It was painted by Walter Withers in 1894 right on the spot just above Salt Creek, near where Brown Street and Rosanna Road in Heidelberg intersect, showing a much less busy Heidelberg in days gone by where tranquil farming paddocks have now been replaced by very busy roads.

Local residents and visitors to Banyule are indeed very fortunate to be able to view reproductions of such historically significant works of art right here in our community for free whilst walking or riding along the trail. This means that residents and visitors alike do not have to go into the city and view these works in art galleries which are often not free to enter and not always on display. 

Consequently, having these works of art reproduced and signposted, mostly on the actual spot they were created, makes connecting with the rich history of art in our local area and the artworks of immense historical and cultural significance more accessible to the local community, visitors and students alike.  It serves as a welcome reminder of a time long passed by, where the landscape in and around Heidelberg provided many rich scenes for these now historically revered painters to capture.

This petition is to request Banyule City Council and Parks Victoria:

1.  To not remove the signs depicting reproductions of many famous paintings of Heidelberg School artists which are of significant, local heritage;
2.  Seek public funding to ensure the maintenance, repair and upkeep of the signs along the trail in order that local residents and visitors to Banyule can continue to enjoy them;
3.  Undertake to engage in extensive community consultation with the local community and residents before any further action is taken in regard to the artist trail and the signs depicting the artworks along the trail;
4.  Keep the community updated and informed of any change to this important and significant local landmark prior to any changes being implemented.

Whilst Banyule Council does not accept electronic petitions they will be advised by email every time someone signs.  It shows that there is a strong level of community support for this issue.  And that's why signing this petition on line is  very valuable.

If you want to continue to support this important cause, you can:

1.  Request a hard copy be sent to you via email;

2.  Drop in to these fantastic local cafes where you can sign the petition whilst you enjoy some fantastic, local, culinary delights or a quick coffee.  A huge thank you to :

*  Cafe Matto, 136 Burgundy Street, Heidelberg;

*  Mr. Peebles, 54 Heidelberg Road, Ivanhoe;

*  Hunter Lane, 76 Turnham Avenue, Rosanna.

If you are a local trader and you want to host this petition, email us, and we will organise to get one to you asap!

Thank you for your support!



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