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Photographs supplied by Kent Watson

The Garden of the Grieving Mother commemorates the grief and anxiety experienced by families, and in particular mothers, during World War One. 

The Grieving Mother statue stands as a permanent memorial to the mothers and families at home who experienced the grief and deep anxiety that is the consequence of war, irrespective of the colour or style of uniform being worn at the battle front. 

The design ambition for the ‘Garden of the Grieving Mother’ was to create a thoughtful and peaceful memorial that is cohesive to the existing Avenue of Honour precinct. Geographically situated in a network of memorials it provides a quiet place away from the road to pause and contemplate the sacrifices of war. Two large scale axes gesturally make their mark across this unique site. This promotes a clear pedestrian route to the Avenue of Honour on the West and a strong visual connection to the Arch of Victory to the North. Peter Corlett’s ‘Grieving Mother’ sculpture is located at the intersection of these two axes - casting her eye across the passage of verse displayed on the pavement to the Arch of Victory beyond.

This symbolic relationship between the mother and the Arch captures the disconnect felt by those left behind. As the ‘Garden of the Grieving Mother’ memorial will be experienced both from the vehicle and on foot it was crucial to consider both of these experiences when designing this space. Slight variations in topography, materiality, lighting and mass planting schemes means this evolving landscape can be appreciated at a variety of scales and interactions. 




Address:Learmonth Street, near Arch of Victory, Ballarat, 3350
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -37.553732
Long: 143.813007
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Sculpture
Monument Theme:Conflict
Actual Event Start Date:04-August-1914
Actual Event End Date:28-June-1919
Artist:Peter Corlett (Melbourne, VIC)


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Wednesday 15th February, 2017
Front Inscription

I had no skill to offer
I had no wealth to spend
Mine was a greater glory
I had a son to send

Silently the shades of evening gather round my lonely door
Silently they bring before me the face I shall see no more

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au