We walked to the mangrove close to Kokoda Education Center on Saturday. It's right there, a small patch of halophytes, their sharp green leaves shining in the light, tasting like salt, their roots deep and up above the saline water of the Paramatta river. It's quiet and beautiful.
The magrove used to run all along the river, but nowadays there's, sadly, not much left of it. It's been either destroyed by the factories, either ripped off and replaced by walls to "solidify the bank", or even poisoined and cut off to clear the view, so residents enjoy "their" river.
Today, the public slowly discovers the complexity and necessity of such coastal vegetation.
Filtering the wastes and soil washed by the rains, the mangroves keep our rivers and oceans clean. They also protect the coastal areas from erosion, storm surge such as hurricane and tsunami. Their massive root system efficiently dissipate waves energy. In other words, its role in the eco-system is crucial.
The City of Canada Bay knows it well and since 2017, with the help of Ju'eta Amir, their Health, Building & Environment Support Officer, funds have gone towards free educational workshops.
This year, Ju'eta contacted Chichi Bracken who runs Artspark Studio in Rozelle, to get involved in a series of art workshops.
Chichi and I discussed how ink painting could be the ideal medium for conveying the ecological concern of the City of Canada Bay. There are 4 workshops planned. One was held last Saturday and this is how it was like:
I'll run another ink workshop at the end of the month on the 28th and Chichi will run the two others in September and November.
If you wish to take part into one of these free workshop, register your interest on eventbrite.
Do it quick, places are limited and July workshop is already booked!