Walker Corporation

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April 2024 | Media Releases

Fielding reveals Festival's finishing touch

Two of the largest indigenous artworks ever commissioned for an Adelaide building have been unveiled by local artist Zaachariaha Fielding, revealing the finishing touches for the grand lobbies of One Festival Tower by Walker Corporation.

The giant canvases, measuring 10 metres by 4.5 metres and 8.3 metres by 5.1 metres respectively, were the final pieces commissioned by the late Lang Walker AO. They represent his bold vision to transform the Festival Tower precinct into the commercial and cultural heart of Adelaide City.

An Adelaide-based artist from the Mimili Community on the APY Lands and one-half of the Electric Fields duo representing Australia at Eurovision, Mr Fielding said he is proud to see what started in his head and heart, explode onto such a large stage, in a place he remembers fondly as an old hang-out spot.

“The Festival Tower site is actually quite meaningful to me. I have lots of great memories of conversations with friends and meeting other young people who became artists and musicians. It has become a new kind of meeting place now, with my artwork gracing the walls - how amazing is that,” said Mr Fielding.

“I love that Walker have been so bold with their choice of aesthetic and embraced the large scale. I love that art is important to them. It’s so important to me.”

Zaachariaha Fielding - Artist
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“I always think about the longevity of my artwork, how my paintings will probably outlive me. I can’t believe there will be a piece of artwork this epic that I get to leave behind. What an opportunity. What a privilege.”

Walker Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer David Gallant commended Zaachariaha’s work saying Lang would be proud to see Zaachariaha’s bold vision come to life.

“Lang believed art was essential to creating great places. Art has the ability to connect people with place and this is a philosophy he has passed on to our Walker team,” Mr Gallant said.

“Lang loved the way Zaachariaha uses bold shapes and colour to reflect his own memories, and having the opportunity to do this at Festival Plaza really reinforces the spirit and vibrancy we are committed to bringing to the Adelaide Riverbank.”

South Australia Minister for Arts Andrea Michaels said projects like the Festival Tower precinct are helping to create more opportunities for artists and arts workers in our state.

“These collaborations are fantastic for our community to connect and engage with local artists, showcasing our local talent in beautiful spaces like the One Festival Tower precinct where people can come and enjoy it,” Ms Michaels said.

Art Gallery of South Australia is a fearless and innovative leader that has long championed art from the APY Lands locally, nationally and internationally. Assistant Director Lisa Slade said this new cultural experience is located just a 10-minute walk from the Gallery.

“This project exemplifies best practice in creative collaborations underpinned by the notion that art plays a critical role in shaping our cities and helping us to see ourselves. There has never been a more critical time to place art by First Nations artists at the forefront of our storytelling,” said Ms Slade.

Honey Ant Dreaming by Yaritji Young at Parramatta Square 2 jpgHoney Ant Dreaming by Yaritji Young at Parramatta Square 2 jpg

Honey Ant Dreaming by Yaritji Young in the lobby of 6 Parramatta Square

“This investment in our city and South Australian artists helps cement Adelaide as a place where our arts and creative sector grow and thrive, shaping the Riverbank as the cultural heart of the city.”

Since beginning his visual arts practice in 2020, Mr Fielding has undertaken two successful solo exhibitions and been recognised by a string of prestigious awards, including the Wynne Prize in May 2023 – a prestigious award for landscape paintings and the People's Choice award for the 2023 Ramsay Art Prize. His work features in public displays across the country, including the Art Gallery of South Australia, National Gallery of Victoria, Artbank and numerous private collections.

Mr Fielding is also a vocalist for the South Australian musical duo Electric Fields, alongside keyboard player and producer Michael Ross. The pair will represent Australia at Eurovision 2024, which will run from 7 to 11 May.

The murals add to a significant collection of indigenous artworks hanging in Walker commercial towers across the country. Some of these include fellow South Australian Yaritji Young’s Honey Ant Dreaming at Parramatta Square in Sydney and Honey Ant Story at Collins Square in Melbourne, as well as Yannima Pikarli’s (Tommy Watson’s) Ngayuku Warnka Tjukurpa which is on display in the lobby of Tower Five at Collins Square.

Walker Corporation and Mr Fielding look forward to a formal celebration in the coming months as part of the official opening of the One Festival Tower lobby.