Thirsty Work

This article tells the story of the Irish engineer CY OConnor who was appointed to oversee the construction of the pipeline that would supply the Kalgoorlie goldfields with fresh water and whose suicide caused much controversy in the region. The OConnor monuments throughout the south of Western Australia are now being joined by contemporary sculptures that tell the other side of the story and play on the anxieties buried below. Anne Neil and Adrian Jones have developed works such as Death by Water which acts as a thirsty allegory of CYs life and Water Carrier which encourages visitors to listen to the trickle of despair that is so ingrained in the history of Kalgoorlie.

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