Dame Koala

Artist : Tracy Smith

Sponsor: Al's Bakehouse

Location: 49a Hastings Street, Wauchope NSW 2446

Description / Inspiration

This is Dame Koala, fashioned after Dame Edna, a great Australian icon and character.

This design is quirky and fun just like Dame Edna and she is a lady with lots of bling and pizazz.

Dame Koala brings glamour and diversity to the Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail (established 2014). There are now 87 Hello Koalas each one metre high and hand painted by artists with messages relating to the arts, heritage, and the environment.

Hello Koalas also launched its 2.5 metre high Big Koala (installed in September 2022) as the iconic landmark for 'Guulabaa, Place of Koala', in the Cowarra State Forest, just 10 minutes drive from Wauchope and Al's Bakehouse.

Artist Biography

Tracy migrated to Australia in May 2013 from London, England. She is originally from Hull in Yorkshire. Hull is where the 'Larkin with Toads' sculpture trail was held in 2010, and that is what inspired her to enter the Hello Koalas artist submission process.

'Larkin with Toads', developed by arts and health practitioner Elaine Burke, was the inspiration behind the development of the Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail. In the early days, Elaine worked with Hello Koalas founder Margret Meagher to set up Hello Koalas in Port Macquarie in 2013 and 2014.

Tracy is a graphic designer who has always had a passion for art and design. Tracy lives to travel and likes to explore other cultures and this is where she found inspiration for her design work. She also enjoys photography, especially wildlife photography. Before migrating to Australia Tracy worked for Penguin the book publishers as a designer for 5 years. Tracy now works freelance here in Australia.

Location Info

"Dame Koala", by Wingham artist Tracy Smith, is resident at Al's Bakehouse in Wauchope. Al's Bakehouse is a family bakery supplying Sweet Treats, Cakes, Meat Pies, Breads and Buns and great Coffee. With these opening hours: Monday to Friday, 5am – 4.30pm, Saturday 6am - 1pm, people can get a really great start to the day and pick up ideas for lunch and dinner time along the way. Takeaway only. We love the chunky pepper meat pies, the date rolls like Grannie used to make and all the old favourites in slices and tarts. But there's so much to choose from. The Team at Al's go the extra mile with big smiles and quality service. Dame Koala loves her new home. Thanks Al, Deb, Sharna and the Team. We are proud you have joined the Hello Koalas family. The big attraction nearby is 'Guulabaa, Place of Koala', an educational and tourism project being developed by Forestry Corporation of NSW with Hello Koalas Sculpture Trail and three other project partners - Koala Conservation Australia with its planned wild koala breeding program, Bunyah Aboriginal Land Council with its gallery and cafe and WildNets Adventure Park. Guulabaa is also the home to Crusader Koala, a friend of Dame Koala, who promotes koala conservation in forests and is at home at the WildNets Adventure Park. Other Hello Koalas sculptures nearby include 'Percy Crossingsafe' by artist Fran Barratt at Timbertown Motel, 'Koala Z' by artist David Pride at Greenbourne Nursery and 'Guula' (an Aborignal word for 'koala') by Aboriginal visual art students from Wauchope TAFE and 'Carramar' by Elise Howard which are both located at Wauchope Train Station.