and it is easier to stay at home,
the nice beer ready."
Whether Porky Allen had anything to do with the mosaic creation is not mentioned.
Someone might like to let me know about this.
The piece-de-resistance in Bairnsdale is the artwork at St Mary's Catholic Church. This is the work of Francesco Floreani. Floreani was born in Udine, near Venice, in 1899. He studied painting under Lucardi, Professor of Painting and Decorating at the Udine College before going on to the Academy of Arts at Turin.
Floreani left Italy in 1928. On arrival in Australia, he worked as ahouse painter in Melbourne. In the earlyl years of the great depression, he was forced into the country to look for work. Like many Italian migrants, he went to the Bairnsdale district where he found some employment, chiefly picking peas. Sometime in 1931, he turned up on the doorstep of the parish priest, Father Cremin, looking for work. Father Cremin asked him to repaint some of the statues at the foot of altar. He was impressed by Floreani's work as well as his credentials of formal artistic training. Every great artist needs a patron. Floreani had Father Cremin. Father Cremin commissioned Floreani to paint some murals in the church. Rather basic scaffolding was used: timber and rope anchored in sand-filled drums. Floreani covered the entire ribbed barrel-vaulted ceiling with gardlands of flowers and over three hundred seraphim and cherubim, each with a different face. The side altars, the sanctuary and upper areas of the nave walls were decorated in what proved to be a mammoth task. It took almost three years. Floreani received the sum of three pounds a week from Father Cremin's own purse. There were further extensions to the church and Floreani returned in 1937 to complete this work. He continued painting after returning to Melbourne where he died in 1981.
A wonderful day!