The Commonwealth Games may still be several months away, but Griffith University alumnus Delvene Cockatoo-Collins already feels like she has won gold.
The North Stradbroke artist was selected to design the artwork for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games medals which were unveiled at the weekend.
Griffith University Games Champion Cameron McEvoy and alumnus Domonic Bedggood were among the athletes at the GC2018 Charity Gala who got a sneak peek at the medals.
“It was overwhelming,” Delvene said.
“My mother was with me and she was in tears.
“It’s nice to finally be able to speak about it and see everyone’s reaction.
“It was so special to hear the athletes say they loved them, because they are who I had in mind when I did the drawings and designs.”
Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation chairman Peter Beattie said the medals were symbolic of every Games and the “ultimate goal” of every athlete.
“The reveal of these striking gold, silver and bronze medals for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games is a special and significant moment for the athletes as they can now visualise what they are training and competing for,” he said.
A descendent of the Nunukul, Ngugi and Goenpul people, Delvene lives and works on Minjerribah, North Stradbroke Island – her mother and grandmothers’ birthplace.
She said Queensland’s beaches and coastline had inspired her designs.
“I hope the athletes and visitors who come here for the Games take away memories of our beautiful beaches and the sunlight and come to understand the history and culture of our First Nation peoples,” she said.
“The Medal design represents the soft sand lines which shift with every tide and wave and is symbolic of athletic achievement.
“The continual change of tide represents the evolution in Athletes who are making their mark. Although the moment in time may be fleeting, it is forever marked within the shells that are brought upon its tidelines.”
Delvene graduated from the Bachelor of Leisure Management in 1996, and was already working as a practicing artist while she studied.
“I was studying full-time and working as a practicing artist – it was a busy time,” she said.
“I look back on those days fondly – I was lucky enough to be mentored by inspiring teachers like Ray Hibbens, and supported by the Gumurrii Student Support Unit.“