Friday, 6 October 2023 - 11:48am

Many hands make extraordinary work - with video

2 min read

News article photos (9 items)

The artist (centre) and her inspiration: Tony Green, Anisa Sharif and Inspector Peter Cooper.
Deputy Commissioner Wally Haumaha gave the opening address on behalf of Police.
Two years in the making - the team behind the artworks and the commemorative ceremony.
Constable Hadleigh White, Ethnic Liaison Officer, worked closely with the Muslim community in the planning of the event.
Two mosaics were gifted to Police. Senior Sergeant Aaron Brady and Inspector Bryan Buck accepted one on behalf of AOS and STG.
?? accepted the artworks on behalf of the Muslim community from Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw.
Detective Inspector Rob Jones, our Police Liaison Officer in Melbourne.
The artist, Anisa Sharif, explaining the meaning behind the stunning artworks to members of the Muslim community..

A few weeks after the March 15 terror attacks, Inspector Peter Cooper and Tony Green from Masjid An-Nur travelled to Melbourne to deliver a presentation to Victoria Police and the Victorian Muslim community about the attacks.

Anisa Sharif, a member of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) Community Liaison Team and an artist, was in the audience that day.

She was so moved by Peter and Tony’s account she decided to create a large-scale mosaic artwork acknowledging the tragic loss of life and the outpouring of global support to New Zealand.

Images from the mosaic presentation.

At an emotional commemorative ceremony in Christchurch on Wednesday 20 September, Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw, Anisa and members of the AFP Southern Command Community Liaison Team (CLT) presented the artworks to Christchurch’s Muslim community, New Zealand Police, Fire and Emergency and Hato Hone St John.

Commissioner Kershaw said the artworks were a token of the AFP and Australian community’s ongoing support for the people of New Zealand.

“These memorial artworks were created piece by piece by individuals across many faiths and cultures throughout Australia,” Commissioner Kershaw said.

“Just like our communities, they truly do symbolise thousands of individual pieces coming together to create a unified whole. We hope that they remain a poignant reminder that together we are stronger.”

The artworks, created piece by piece over the course of two years and during COVID lockdowns, saw hundreds of Australians, including AFP and emergency service members, contribute. They were transported all over Melbourne in the back of a police vehicle to allow community members from different faiths and ethnicities to be involved.

The mosaic design incorporates New Zealand’s iconic silver fern emerging from a central mandala representing the generational growth of a community.

Deputy Commissioner Wally Haumaha, who travelled to Christchurch for the presentation, said partner relationships were integral in the response to the tragic events of 15 March 2019.

“The support of our Australian Police partners contributed to the wellbeing of the Muslim community and wider Christchurch communities at a time of great need,” he said.

“The gifting of these taonga is a true example of the strength we take when we all work together.

“We thank all those who have worked so hard to create this symbol of our shared commitment to building peaceful, safe and inclusive communities.”