1. Themes
  2. A to Z

Larry La Trobe

Pamela Irving
Bronze sculpture
1992 and 1996
Corner of Collins and Swanston Streets

Pamela Irving created Larry La Trobe in 1992 as part of the Percent for Art Program and Swanston Street redevelopment. He is a life-size, dingo-like dog who surveys the activity in City Square. Larry was based loosely on Irving's dog Lucy and on her uncle, Larry. She claims that the dog is iconic to Australia, and from the moment it was unveiled, Larry La Trobe became one of Melbourne's most loved sculptures.

Despite being anchored to the site with 30 centimetre bolts, Larry disappeared in August 1995. Council immediately launched a campaign for his return, but to no avail. On hearing of the theft, Larry's most ardent admirer, Peter Kolliner, who had owned the foundry where he was cast, offered to produce another one. Irving altered the new Larry's colouring to affect some individuality (he has a redder tinge) but in all other respects he is the same.

Larry was officially welcomed home on 16 September 1996. Melbourne band Jugularity entertained the crowd with an ode to the sculpture, Larry Come Home, a dogumentary, sung to the tune of Advance Australia Fair.

City Of Melbourne