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Overview | Terra Mater; Our Common Home

At the entrance to St Rita’s College Trinity Centre sits a hand-carved sandstone representation of the Earth in the form of a world globe encrusted with blue smalti and gold leaf tesserae.
Terra Mater, Our Common Home, is our response to Pope Francis’ second encyclical, Laudato si’. He calls on us to adjust our way of life, our governance, and our faith.

He asks us to heed the warnings of a changing planet and to take swift and unified global action to “care for our common home.” This work contextually presents the world’s countries (shown in gold) surrounded by rising oceans. It represents the effects of volcanic activity, causing variations in the earth’s orbit, axis, and solar cycle that threatens the survival of all forms of life on Terra Mater (Earth).

The work asks its audience, “what can I do to be an active participant in the preservation of the planet?” and focuses on Australia’s position in the Asia Pacific region. It proposes the idea that Australia can become a world leader in tackling the problems of climate change through dedicated action.
Three of the College pillars, Courage, Justice, and Hope, reflect the life of St Rita through her demonstrated fortitude and strength and inspire meeting life’s difficulties. Terra Mater – Our Common Home tells us that we can overcome the challenges before us by adopting these three pillars.


Terra Mater; Our Common Home, 2020


Venetian Smalti, Gold, and Sandstone


St Rita’s College, Clayfield

What We Did

Concept Design, Fabrication, Installation

Orsoni’s Venetian smalti is our preferred material. Orsoni’s historical Venetian furnace has used the same techniques since 1888 to produce 24K gold leaf mosaic tessera and Venetian smalti.

Let's Be Creative Together

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