Major new tapestry commission to celebrate the opening of the Sir John Monash Centre in France


The Australian Tapestry Workshop (ATW) is delighted to announce a major tapestry designed by prominent Australian artists Lyndell Brown and Charles Green for the new Sir John Monash Centre (SJMC) in France.

The Tapestry Foundation of Australia and a number of generous private donors including; The Marjorie M. Kingston Trust, The Calvert-Jones Family, Anne and Mark Robertson, Australian Hotels Association, Samantha and Charles Baillieu, and Baillieu and Sarah Myer are supporting this important tapestry. The ATW is additionally thrilled that the ANZAC Centenary Arts and Culture Fund will be assisting with this project.

Senator Paterson, Patron Senator for Melbourne Ports said:

“As the Patron Senator for Melbourne Ports, I am pleased to announce this ANZAC Centenary Arts and Culture fund grant for $89,860. The Sir John Monash Centre, which currently under construction in Villers-Bretonneux, is set to become an important memorial for Australia and the 2.5m x 5.04m tapestry Morning Star will be prominently displayed in the foyer of the SJMC.

The SJMC has been designed by Cox Architects, with Convergence Associates, and it will create an evocative, emotional, informative and educational experience for visitors of all nationalities.

The tapestry will provide a lasting legacy in perpetuity commemorating the 46,000 Australian lives lost
in the battles of the Western Front in World War 1 and commemorate the Centenary of ANZAC. The design is by renowned Australian artists Lyndell Brown and Charles Green, who have been war artists in Iraq and Afghanistan and have had over 30 exhibitions in Australia and internationally.

Artists Lyndell Brown and Charles Green said:

“Just as the SJMC provides both Australian and non-Australian visitors with an understanding of the impact of Australia’s involvement on the Western Front through an engagement with the places in which the Australians fought and the experiences of those who were there, so this tapestry aims to communicate to non-Australians and to Australian pilgrims an understanding of the places for which the Australians fought and the imaginary spaces that they carried with them. We know this is the case: Charles Green’s grandfather was one of those WW1 Australian soldiers at the Western Front, badly wounded and invalided on these precise battlefields, and we have his letters to home”.

This significant contemporary artistic work and commemorative tribute will promote Australia’s creative excellence and innovation on a world stage. The tapestry will educate a new audience about Australia’s early role in international affairs, reshape patterns of visitation to the Western Front battlefields and in so doing, provide a lasting legacy from the Centenary of ANZAC.

Director of the Australian Tapestry Workshop Antonia Syme said:

“It is such an honour for the Australian Tapestry Workshop to be creating this wonderful work with Lyndell and Charles on a grand scale for the Sir John Monash Centre, and it is a very powerful and sensitive tribute to all the people who paid the ultimate sacrifice on the Western Front with their lives. We are extremely grateful for the generosity of a number of visionary people, and the ANZAC Centenary Fund in making this superb tapestry possible.”

The tapestry will begin production next month at the Australian Tapestry Workshop in Melbourne, and will take over 4000 hours to weave. The tapestry will be unveiled at the opening of the SJMC on ANZAC day in 2018.


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