If These Halls Could Talk
Showcasing the work produced by local Yaegl woman and visual artist Frances Belle Parker, who transformed the Eatonsville Hall through a large-scale immersive installation.
Arts Northern Rivers project If These Halls Could Talk was a multi-arts initiative two-year project designed to revitalise and celebrate the significance of the humble community hall and the role they play in regional communities.
Whether done up or worn out, these little gems scattered around the country hold secrets of times gone by and memories of lives still being lived; from first kisses to kisses goodbye If These Halls Could Talk was a place-making project that empowered communities to reengage with their community hall; to raise the roof and discover what’s inside, to listen and then to follow the history and document the unique narrative of their hall and the community that surrounds it.
Of the seven halls from across the Northern Rivers selected to have a renowned artist collaborate with their community, Eatonsville Hall was selected for the Clarence Valley region. Perched atop a grassy hill overlooking the majestic Clarence River and like all of the halls featured in the project this Hall is the keeper of many extraordinary stories.
Local Yaegl artist Frances Belle Parker was commissioned by Arts Northern Rivers to tell the tale of Eatonsville Hall transforming this meeting place through a large-scale immersive installation titled Can You Hear the Whispering Walls which comprised of suspended lengths of billowing fabric imprinted with imagery and imbued with sound that map the land, the hall and the people of Eatonsville. Inspired by the underlying Indigenous history and as a meeting place for the hall community, the work offers a space to reflect on the many histories of the hall.
Can You Hear the Whispering Walls was installed at Eatonsville Hall in October 2016
As the peak arts organisation Arts Northern Rivers works with individuals, organisations and all levels of government to generate, promote and advocate for the arts and creative industries in the Northern Rivers region of NSW. Arts Northern Rivers is supported by Arts NSW and the seven local governments of the region including Clarence Valley Council.
Image credit: Jules Ober Frances Belle Parker with her installation If These Halls Could Talk