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Depot - Moved by Grendas

7 - 13 April 2008
Old Grenda’s Bus Depot
9 Foster St, Dandenong

Depot was an installation of contemporary artworks created by seven artists at the decommissioned Grenda’s bus depot. Depot was open for one week in April prior to the site being demolished. The artworks, which were made on site, responded to the industrial spaces of the historic depot and pre-empted its demolition.

The project provided an opportunity for the community to stop, look, listen and experience the spaces that have housed an iconic Dandenong business for more than 50 years.

Present and former staff and the broader community were invited to relive and honour a celebrated workspace, and in doing so witness the skills of artists transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary.


Then and now

In 1945, George Grenda started a bus company in Dandenong from the site at 9 Foster Street. More than half a century later in 2008 the Grenda Corporation relocated their operations to a new site south of the railway line. Grenda’s move from 9 Foster Street was immeasurably significant. They were be the first major business to relocate and embrace the opportunity of Dandenong’s extraordinary $290 million revitalisation initiative.


Photographic work

In early 2008, photographer Hilton Stone was commissioned by the City of Greater Dandenong and given unrestricted access to the Grenda’s site to record the business, the work force and the everyday operations.  The result was a collection of photos that give rare insights into the culture of the workplace, daily rituals, the connection between staff, and the manner in which the business functions.


Oral histories

In October 2007, a series of oral histories and sound bites were recorded by David Crofts to capture the stories and memories associated with Grenda’s at Foster Street.  Interviews were undertaken with a range of staff including drivers and mechanics; office and control room staff; and management, capturing personal memories and recollections


Writer

Geraldine Barlow interviewed the artists and discussed their work and its relationship to the site.


Memories and stories

Through the project, a commemorative booklet titled ‘Moved by Grenda’s' featuring photos and stories of the historic dept was created.

The booklet maps the final stages of the historic depot, including its demolition in May 2008 to make way for the construction of the George St Bridge. It records the memories of Grenda's staff through the stories and quotes they shared with writer David Crofts. It is accompanied by a collection of thought provoking photographs taken by Hilton Stone.



Depot occurred between 7 – 13 April 2008 and featured temporary art installations by seven artists at the actual depot site.

Moved by Grenda’s was the overarching project which incorporated the photographic documentation, oral histories and Depot project, presented in a commemorative full colour publication.


http://depot-installation.blogspot.com
Download Depot media kit (PDF - 3.83MB)