Whale Art Project

  • By: Highland Grove

In May 2023 the Moonbeam children were noticing the whales migrating along our coastline. This led to planned group experiences that immersed the children in a rich visual arts program exploring whales.

We explored provocations from local artists Garry Purchase and Grant Molony.

The children’s voices indicated they were enthusiastic to share their artwork with the artists and this led to writing to both Garry and Grant to see how we could further extend this work, exploring whales and visual art techniques.

Grant and Russ Molony met with our RAP team members, who had identified a wish to create a ‘welcome’ on the exterior of our centre. It was decided to begin a project of painting a mural on the water tank. We consulted the children on design and concept through planned small groups, where children had the opportunity to draw their ideas with charcoal, pens, and markers on large pieces of paper.

Grant and Russ engaged the Moonbeam children in a two-day workshop exploring art techniques of spray paint, symbols, storytelling, and layering.




To create the concept for the mural, the children’s artwork, ideas, and voices were shared with Grant and Russ to be incorporated within the design.



The artwork on our water tank tells this story.

In Aboriginal culture we have three families. Our immediate family, our community and mother herself, the natural environment. These are the foundations of connection, inclusion and ownership, represented through three clear realms of land, sky and sea.

Our work speaks of a journey readable both ways. A travel story of learning and growth both intriguing and inspiring coming from either sky or sea. Uplifting with an underlying voice of strength and respect.

The interwoven connection of sky, land and sea. Spoken through the amazing natural world on our doorstep. The land will be warm and caring. The sky is breath and stillness. The sea calming and cooling.

As the saltwater heals and the mountains breathe, the sacred connection between land and sea bring us all together, surrounded by Mother Earth and the culture we live and share.

The waterways travel along our coastline streaming through our special places.