An important relic, the Munmorah Mural, is being excavated from the former Munmorah Power Station as demolition of the station continues.
Artist and architect, Mr Gino Volpato, created the 9.1 metre long and 2.4 metre high artwork from more than 800 handmade ceramic tiles in 1966, when the power station was being built.
It depicts the electricity generation process.
Mr Stephen Saladine, Managing Director of Generator Property Management (GPM), said that Liberty Industrial, the demolition contractor, had engaged the best expertise available to undertake this important removal.
“An experienced stonemason is carrying out the task using his skills in architectural ceramics to delicately attempt to remove the artwork in small sections.
“Each section will then be carefully packed to prevent damage, catalogued and marked and stored in an appropriate way to enable future extraction and reinstatement if someone could utilise the artwork,” Mr Saladine said.
The tiles have deteriorated over time, and the nature of the single skin brick wall has meant that there is no workable alternative than disassembling the work piece by piece.
“The brick wall is braced in place by roof beams spanning the foyer and is inherently unstable.
“It is cracked in many places and assessment indicates that it would fall to pieces if stressed, probably breaking tiles in the process,” Mr Saladine said.
“GPM has a 3D scan of the artwork and pictures taken to enable assessment by parties interested in reinstating the artwork in a suitable heritage or other location.
“GPM intends to request expressions of interest from parties once the artwork has been successfully removed and stored,” he said.
Once the removal process has been completed, GPM has a secure facility to store the artwork segments and will be monitoring the storage to ensure no further deterioration occurs.
The removal of the mural is expected to be completed by Christmas, subject to any possible complications encountered during the removal process.
Media release, Nov 8
Brooke Simmons, Pursuit Communications