Boarders Raising Awareness with New Artwork

“As a boarding community who obviously has strong ties to the country, it is our belief that we could bring a rural style initiative raising awareness of these issues, to the city.”  An excerpt from the boarders’ submission to the College Executive.

Recently our Year 12 Boarding Leaders approached the College with a submission to have an artwork installed in the boarding school. Below, Head Boarder Amy Treasure tells us about the artwork and its significance to the boarders.

Tell us about the new artwork?

The artwork is a blue tree, constructed from items of junk metal that can be found on farms. This installation came about as the school was already beginning the process of creating an actual blue tree on campus by painting a dead tree. However, this was on the other side of the school away from boarding. We came up with the idea for a smaller visual symbol of the blue tree. This would provide a constant reminder to the boarders about mental health and mental health awareness. By having the art piece constructed from pieces of metal found on farms, it also gives boarders a connection to the artwork as many of them are from farms across WA.

Who is the artist?

Jodie Ditchburn is the artist. She describes herself as a ‘junk metal artist’ and has numerous connections to the College. Jodie is the aunty of current staff member Miss Ditchburn, neighbour to Year 12 student Adele Smith and step-mum to past student Lisa Ditchburn (Class of 2005). She has completed many amazing pieces of art, including the Kukerin ‘6352’ postcode artwork which can be seen on the way into Kukerin. Due to her talent and connections to the school, we believed she would be the best artist for the job.

Why is this important to the boarders?

Although the Mental Health Strategy has become a huge part of the school this year, in boarding the girls don’t have the everyday support of our parents. At times, we may feel the pressure and stress of living away from home a little more. We believe that having a blue tree in boarding shows our commitment to the mental wellbeing of boarders and that girls should be encouraged to talk about upsetting issues.

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