The mural, commissioned by the Melbourne Metropolitan Fire Brigade, was started in 1980 and completed in 1982. The designer and director was Harold Freedman, while the work was carried out by master tiler Tony Barese, Joe Attard and David Jack. There is a narrative unfolding in this mural, beginning at the top and going down. It's an epic spanning centuries, so it takes up about four storeys.
The Legend of Fire is part romance, fantasy, horror, drama and, according to the huge mosaic, not much comedy. Characters include the wayward Phaeton, who rode his father's (Helios - the sun-god) chariot too close to Earth and started a tragic blaze, raising the ire of Zeus, the most powerful god of them all. A carefully placed bolt of lightning, and the reckless Phaeton was burnt to cinders and order restored to the earth and heavens.
|Phaeton and Zeus|
|Prometheus stealing fire form the gods and giving it to humans|
That's where Pandora came in. She created a fair bit of havoc after being sent by Zeus to Earth, succumbing to curiosity and opening that little box of miseries. Her relationship to fire rates a big mention in the glowing scenes. This bottom right panel continues the theme of fiery destruction, even showing an erupting volcano and the atom bomb (right).
The mural, made up of glass tiles each painstakingly and individually placed, has a religious tone, with Zeus sitting atop scenes of sufferers, heroes and villains. Mosaic is almost indestructible, so if the station burns down there will be a reminder!
This post is part of the Monday Murals meme.