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The Aboriginal Themed Riverside Walk

Home > Sydney > Outdoor | Art | Family | Street Art | Walks
by Pauline (subscribe)
http://howtoi.com.au/profile/493/
Published May 15th 2013
Enjoy a brisk walk and learn about Aboriginal art & history
riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf,
Parramatta Riverside Walk

One of the great places to see Aboriginal artwork and learn about Aboriginal history in Australia is through The Riverside Walk, along the northern side of Parramatta foreshore.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, lennox bridge,
Lennox Bridge (one of the oldest bridge in Australia) on Church Street

If you plan to visit Parramatta by ferry, you can begin the walk from the wharf but you can also start from Church Street near the Visitor Information Centre. From the visitor centre, instead of crossing Lennox bridge (one of the oldest stone arch bridge in Australia), walk down a small flight of stairs to access the aboriginal themed riverside walkway.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf,
Aboriginal artwork by Jamie Eastwood, 2000

The artwork on the footpath was designed, hand-painted and installed by Jamie Eastwood, a descendant of the Ngemba people of far northwestern NSW.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf,
Different colors depicting different chapters of the history

The paintings featured Aboriginal history from early beginnings with different colours depicting different chapters of the history. I love the use of bright colours like yellow, blue and red.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, interpretive sign,
Interpretive Sign

Interpretive signs explaining the significance of the artwork were installed at the start of each section. Reading these signs were very helpful in understanding the interesting stories behind these paintings.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, native institution
Native Institution

The Native Institution section describes the failure of Australia's first school for Aboriginal children in Parramatta known as the Native Institution, established by Governor Macquarie in 1814. Painting on this section represents Aboriginal children struggling from being taken away from their parents and homeland by officers from colonial authorities.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, Jamie Eastwood, parramatta river, Parramatta wharf,
Artwork depicting sea creatures

My favourite section is the one that showcases various sea creatures.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, ducks
A flock of ducks getting some sunshine

The Invasion
The Invasion

Next section, The Invasion, represents the arrival of the First Fleet which also resulted in conflict and hostility between the people.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, pemulwuy
Pemulwuy

Pemulwuy was an Aboriginal warrior who fought to protect his land but was ambushed and killed. The painting on the footpath represents Pemulwuy's stand off with colonial authorities on the streets of Parramatta.

The painted walkway ended with closing chapter called The Reconciliation where Australians come together to share, learn and understand Aboriginal culture as well as its heritage.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf, barry wilde bridge fountain,
Barry Wilde Bridge Fountain

Continue walking along the footpath and you'll see the Barry Wilde bridge fountain which operates seven days a week from 12pm - 2pm and 5.30pm - 9.30pm.

riverside walk, aboriginal art, james eastwood, parramatta river, parramatta wharf,
Parramatta Ferry Wharf

Just a few meters away from the fountain is the Parramatta Ferry wharf where you can catch a ferry back to the city or have a cup of coffee at a cafe nearby. Otherwise, you can burn more calories by walking back to the Visitor Information Centre at Church Street which is only 500m away.

This is an easy walk of about 1km (500m each way) from Visitor Information centre to the wharf and vice versa. Take a stroll here next time when you are at Parramatta if you haven't done the walk yet.
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Why? Learn about Aboriginal artwork and history
When: Anytime
Where: Parramatta Riverside
Cost: Free
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