Port Hedland: a surreal view

My name in Anne Bateman, I am 46 and have been living in Port Hedland for 16 months.  I took all my own photos in and around Port Hedland, the resulting images are a little strange and far from realistic but show a different perspective of things we see here every day.

How insignificant we are

Protective Endangerment


How insignificant we are

Tabba Rocks

We went for a lovely sunset drive along the access road from Port Hedland and came across these beautiful rock formations.

Oh, What a Night!

This entry is a bit late in coming but the girls at the Gallery still can’t get over what a wonderful success the Before the Town Got Big opening night was.

As the exhibition continues, everyone who peruses it raves about the unique and beautiful artwork and the fact that the pieces are selling at warp speed!

Prior to the exhibition, the Spinifex Hill Artists worked daily for months honing their artistic talents. This exhibition tells the stories of the artists’ lives and experiences growing up in Port Hedland and the Pilbara before it became the mining hub it is now known for.

Before the Town Got Big will be displayed at the Port Hedland Courthouse Gallery until December 24th, but that doesn’t mean your favourite painting will be available to purchase for that long! Stop into the Gallery and bring home a piece of Before the Town Got Big before someone else scoops it up!

Photos courtesy of Faye Harris.

Before The Town Got Big Exhibition

I once again enjoyed an evening at the Court House Gallery surrounded by amazingly talented local artists.  The ‘buzz’ on the night was electric!

The volume of work for this exhibition is outstanding and the stories behind each piece captures the imagination and showcases our community’s history through the Artist’s eyes.

Above:  Anne Sibosado

Below:  Max GeorgeThe artists were only to happy to pose with their Art.

Below:  Maggie Green

The photo below depicts the Artist’s enthusiasm and willingness to share their stories with everyone.  Here Maggie Green describes the piece for the new owner. 

Thank you to all who made this evening possible and to the Artists for sharing so much of themselves.

Glass Lane Public Art

Have you walked along Glass Lane lately? If not, you’d be pretty surprised to see the latest feature of the West End. On 17 October the Small Wins team, formed from FORM’s Pilbara Place Making Workshops, came together with support from the Port Hedland Police Station and the Youth Involvement Council to turn an ordinary chain-link fence into a large-scale canvas popping with colour.

Geraldton-based artist Helen Ansell led community members in the first of the Small Wins projects. The artwork that inspired the project is Dinner Camp painted by Spinifex Hill Artist Maggie Green as part of the Before The Town Got Big exhibition. The painting tells the story of the artist’s life growing up at Myroodah Station.

Take a stroll along Glass Lane and admire the hard work of the Small Win’s Team.

Before Police Fence

After Police Fence

The Fence lit up for the Glass Lane Markets

Photos courtesy of Samantha Bell & Bill Shaylor

Nothing Came By Road

A public sculpture project by and for the people of Hedland

Nothing Came by Road is a collection of six sculptures, made from the original pylons of the old Hedland Jetty, which pay tribute to the town’s heritage as a rail hub and sea port.

Under the guidance and mentorship of Fremantle-based sculptors Anne Neil and Steve Tepper, six local artists – Randal Canning, Zabia Chmielewski, Garry Horton, Daniele Specogne, John Todd and Louis Warren – designed and made these pieces in 2003.

The sculpture project, part of an overall town centre development scheme, was funded by the Australia Council, the Department of Culture and Arts of the Government of Western Australia, and BHP Billiton Iron Ore. Additional support came from BOC Gases Limited, Brambles, C Con Concrete, C and J Contracting, Coates Hire, Hedland Emporium, Onesteel Metaland, Port Hedland Port Authority, Portside Fabrications, Sims Metal, Taylors Disposals and Transline Tree Trimmer.

The six sculptures were originally installed in February 2004 on the site of the oldest building in Hedland, St Matthews Church (now demolished), beside the Courthouse Gallery.  Anne Neil and Steve Tepper donated the beautiful cast bronze name plaques for each sculpture.  In 2004, Nothing Came by Road was listed among 35 of the best Regional Art projects in Australia.

In 2010 the sculptures were re-located into this specially landscaped Sculpture Park.

Sculptures close-up:

With Cyclone, Randal Canning humorously references the impact of cyclones in this part of the world. Randal has contributed to a number of public art pieces in Hedland and  won the People’s Choice and Best Sculpture awards in the 2002 Hedland Art Awards.

Zabia Chmielewski’s Ocean Going World articulates the dependence of early non-Indigenous settlers on sea trade and transport. Zabia, a sculptor and visual artist, won the Most Outstanding Artwork award in the 2002 Hedland Art Awards.

With Raising the Marble Bar, Garry Horton acknowledges the development of rail throughout the Pilbara. Garry was highly commended in the 2002 Hedland Art Awards.

For Staircase to a View, photographer, jeweller and stone carver Daniele Specogne creates informal seating and a circular staircase structure out of variously-sized pieces of pylon. The text is burnt into its surfaces.

With his sculpture Harbouring a Jetty, Louis Warren celebrates Port Hedland’s original jetty and the fact that, in the early days of non–Indigenous settlement, everything needed for survival came by sea.

Indigenous landscape artist John Todd gives insight into the impact of non-indigenous settlement of Port Hedland on the area’s Indigenous people with his moving sculpture The Invisible Man. Choosing not to work with a jetty pylon, John instead used the wood of a ghost gum.

6 Mile Sunset

We had a work collegue from Perth spend some time in Hedland recently. He is a keen photographer too, so we decided to take our cameras out and about late one afternoon. I managed to capture this shot while we explored 6 Mile.

Hedland sunset

Thought I’d head out and get a shot of the sunset from the foreshore of Port Hedland.  Wasn’t too bad a scene but the following evening, the sunset was a lot more spectacular, but of course I didn’t have my camera to capture that one!  Dont you hate that!

Low Tide at Sunrise in Port Hedland

Low Tide and Sunrise in Port Hedland

I took this one Tuesday morning before heading off to work. What a wonderful world we live in if we can wake up and experience sunrises like this everyday.

Pardoo Station

I lived and worked at Pardoo station back in 2008. I had the time of my life while there.  I wish I could tell you every little detail about it, as every day was the most amazing adventure, but I’m gonna have to just pick a few of my favourites…

The gate coming back into the homestead from the tracks out to the rivers

At the station we had a small shop which sold just the essentials ie milk, bread, fishing tackle, soap etc.  Every day we had Aboriginal communities come in to buy goods.  The little children would run into the store with the biggest smiles on their faces!  My partner and I became quite friendly with one particular community who were in every day. They taught us what we could make out of every tree we pointed to, which goanna to eat, and how to hunt and track. They were always so happy and friendly, Always up for a laugh. I learnt alot about the Aussie outback, and myself with all of their visits. I am so eager to get back to the station and see if they remember me.

These cows walked for 2 hours to get to the water trough

Each day at the station was always completely different. When I tell someone I worked at a cattle station their first reaction almost all of the time is, what could you have possibly done there to make you love it so much, it’s a big dry patch of land, in the middle of nowhere…  But it was the most amazing thing I have ever done. We had many different people coming in every day who we would sit and talk to all night, and hear their amazing stories. The weather was mostly hot and humid, but on the odd occasion we’d be treated to a storm, or an amazing sunset, or rain in amongst the clouds, that would never reach us. We went fishing pretty much everyday, at Pardoo river or Baningarra river. Which always brought something new and amazing to my attention. One day while at Pardoo river I saw a huge stingray jump out of the water! and Baningarra I saw my first sea turtle and Jabiru! When it was low tide we would take some new friends down to Pardoo river and show them how to Mud crab. Which was always so fun. Running through the clay mud and having to climb and jump over big splits made from I guess the mangroves and mudcrabs. where there was one of these big splits in the mud, there would be a mudcrab hole at the end in amongst the mangroves. tiny little bright red crabs with one little claw and one giant one would scatter into their holes when they saw us coming, and all the little mudskippers would jump their way into the water, or into crevasses in the mud.

A mud crab thats missing both his claws

The wildlife at the station always blew me away. I have never experienced anything like it.  All in All Pardoo station is amazing and I believe that everyone needs to experience working on a station. No words can explain working up north. It’s something ya need to see to believe and understand. It’s so peaceful and calming and simply perfect.

"Pardoo Store"

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