Ghosts of Eureka

Stuart John Ekin Walsh

Images courtesy of the artist

Ghosts of Eureka is a large-scale mural, light and audio installation depicting the British Redcoats as they set out to march on rebel miners, almost 164 years ago at the Eureka Stockade. The skeletons depicted are those of British Army Redcoats. They appear as if still alive, marching in full military uniform, as they did in the mortal realm. They represent the passage through two worlds – the realm of the dead and the realm of the living, the continuity between life and death.

This work draws on Catholic traditions from around the world including Australia, Ireland and Mexico, and asks the audience to reflect on the history of Australian immigrant culture in Ballarat. The viewer is asked to consider their own mortality through what is ultimately a light-hearted celebration of life. Reflecting on all the hubris and self-importance the human species is capable of, we are also reminded of our own essential mortality.