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A new piece of art has come to Southbank. Tucked away at the end of Moore Street, outside the Donor Tissue Bank of Victoria, is the latest creation by former Emergency Services Minister, Bruce Esplin.

‘The Gift’ is Bruce’s depiction of tissue donation. The bronze and steel sculpture features two hands, one giving and one receiving. It illustrates the generosity of one person and the gratitude of another.

Bruce Esplin wrote the following when his impressive sculpture was first delivered to the DTBV in his blog:

I was asked to create a sculpture that captured more than just a giving and a receiving hand – many, many discussions with staff from VIFM/DTBV ensued and a great many hours were spent exploring how to design an inanimate, three dimensional object in such a way as to do justice to such a sensitive, emotional and important subject. A subject so complex and perhaps little understood by the broader community.

When the new building is complete, the sculpture will move to it’s permanent home and be installed on the forecourt  main entrance of the Donor Tissue Bank of Victoria – able to be seen by visitors, passers-by and of course staff.

I experienced mixed feelings when the sculpture was delivered. Initially it was hard to let go of something that had been such a big part of my life for so many months, but as it was placed in it’s temporary position, and as I had the opportunity to chat with staff who stopped to look, I felt a wonderful, peaceful feeling – a great sense that it was now home!

Read Bruce Esplin’s full blog about The Gift here.

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Photos by Bruce Esplin AM of ‘The Gift’ and its creation.


With gratitude to Joe Looker, National Media and Content Officer at the Australian Red Cross Blood Service for creating this video for the DTBV.



Visit the Australian Red Cross Blood Service website



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The Gift Installation at Southbank