Art with conviction
A NEW sculpture has been installed at the Fremantle Prison depicting the walk of convicts and prison guards. Report,
A WALK that was done by convicts and guards alike has been immortalised in a sculpture at the Fremantle Prison.
A 14-metre long silhouette has been installed along the prison’s entrance ramp, which depicts a group of life-size convicts and pensioner guards on their arrival to Fremantle.
The ramp was originally built by convict labour.
Fremantle Prison director Paula Nelson said it was a permanent addition to the Fairbairn Ramp.
“The design was intentionally simple, with the harshness of the system of transportation depicted through their posture and chains, and ownership by the British government prominent through the broad arrow symbols,” she said.
“Fairbairn Ramp is itself built from the spoils of Fremantle Prison and maintains its role as a route from the prison to the city.
“This memorial is to those convicts whose labour helped build our wonderful state.”
Heritage Minister David Templeman said the sculpture was a visually striking addition to Fremantle’s heritage.
“The placement of the life-sized group of convicts and guards traversing the prison’s entrance ramp highlights the once harsh purpose of this former convict transport route, giving visitors a stronger insight into our convict past,” he said.
Fremantle MLA Simone McGurk said Fremantle Prison was already a heritage icon.
“This new addition will add to the overall experience,” she said.
Fremantle MLA Simone McGurk and Fremantle Prison director Paula Nelson.
Fremantle Prison director Paula Nelson by the Convict Art exhibition.