Melbourne public art

…fall in love with the city

Three businessmen who bought their own lunch

Three Businessmen Melbourne Public Art


The sculptors named the three businessmen after leading figures who established the city of Melbourne – Swanston (Charles) a prominent businessman and banker in Melbourne, Batman (John) who founded the first settlement in Melbourne and Hoodle (Charles), who designed the layout of the CBD of Melbourne, now called Hoodle Grid. 

I guess the sculptors were trying to convey that the pioneers are watching over the growth and progress of the city. The figures however blend in and seem like they are normal people, day dreaming while waiting for the pedestrian signal to turn green. They also remind one of the weary office crowd going home after a hard days work

Artist Alison Weaver claims that while the men are named and motionless, they are also intended to be anonymous and to represent being ‘trapped in the perpetual motion of consumerism’; strategically placed near a busy shopping area.

It is said that the free hands of the figures are regularly cleaned and polished as the public holds hands with them – for photo ops or for fun. The sculpture is made out of metal.

Interestingly the Sculpture was gifted by the Government of Nauru to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of the City of Melbourne. Nauru is an oval shaped island in the Western Pacific Ocean. They apparently are making a lot of money taking in refugees that seek Asylum in Australia. (I can’t confirm this though….)

Artists / Sculptors

The sculptors are Alison Waver and Paul Quinn. Both are Australian artists with various works and commissions to their credit


April 1994

Where can I find it?

Corner of Swanston and Bourke Streets

May 25, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment