The story behind the UooUoo at Seafarers

Have you seen the UooUoo sculptures pop up around the city? The Royal Children’s Hospital UooUoo art trail celebrates the hospital’s 150th anniversary and features 100 uniquely designed UooUoo sculptures scattered across Melbourne and Geelong, including one at Seafarers.


Visit the UooUoo at Seafarers, named FindYou, as part of the trail until 21 March for a chance to win a private Yarra River boat cruise via the Me and UooUoo 2021 app.

Designed by local artist Vair Buchanan, FindYou is perfectly positioned on the waterfront, just outside the Seafarers display suite, and features hundreds of individually painted children’s faces in a celebration of diversity and inclusivity.

Read about Vair’s story and involvement in the initiative, where she has gone full circle from working with sick children at the hospital as a social worker, to now giving back through her art.

What led your transition from social work to becoming an artist and illustrator?

Art is something I need to make and always have done. I love telling stories through pictures, so illustration seemed a good avenue for me. I also love making public art as it is accessible and something that can reach people sometimes by accident, prompting feelings and reactions you can’t anticipate. I hope that much of my art I create comes from my understanding of people that has developed through my study and practice of social work.

What makes art and illustration for children so special?

Children’s thinking generally is bright and frank with the added ability to suspend suspicion and go along with adventure. These amazing abilities make them fabulous participants as observers and creators of art and illustration I think.

Do you bring things that you have learnt from your time working at the hospital into your art – both FindYou and other work of yours?

Working in social work and within the hospital setting allowed me to develop an understanding of people’s different experiences and perspectives. People want to relate to their situation locally and more broadly. They seek these relatable things out. It helps people to understand themselves, others and the world around them. Children especially so.