Guano Gold Enterprise

The island of Nauru was once a paradise exploited by the mining of phosphates. As the environment became degraded their wealth increased immensely. It was the crowning glory of the Pacific Ocean where locals enjoyed a lavished lifestyle during the 1950s-1990s and envied by the world. Ancient coral limestone pinnacles were revealed as the land was carved and shipped to Britain, Australia and New Zealand as ingredients for fertilizers.

Since independence, unsuccessful investments and hefty governmental expenditure, Nauru has now become one of the poorest countries in the world. By 2020 the once prosperous land was prophesied to have its guano reserves run out. Furthermore, the decline of fertile land Nauru faces a future of economic and eco-political decisions to sustain their poverty stricken country.

Due to such turmoil, Project Gaia designs a way out from the inundation through an ark that will propel Nauru to an inevitable world of tomorrow, giving them a second chance.

Guano Gold Enterprise will rethink the extraterritorial functions of an embassy. Reflecting their national identity, culture and history through the assembly of multiple arks that will embark on a journey for years yet to come.

T A L E S   F R O M   T H E   E N T E R P R I S E


T H E   H A R V E S T E R S

“…We’ve said our prayers and our
morning has now begun. The great
ark has collected many creatures
of flight. She has travelled from
the fabled land of which we come
from in search of a future. We have
picked up discarded goods that
will be reused to help her grow. We
construct from her and we replicate
through her. Our journey continues
on and the next destination is the
Great Blue City of the southern land,
no one really knows how long this
will take as plans to glean over other
surrounding lands are planned.
Some say 100 years and some say 5
years. Once we have arrived, we will
reclaim. There some of us will settle.
And some continue on. Our time in
the ark is a perpetual motion towards
the endless ocean. Each morning
we feed the creatures from the fish
farms that surround the ark, Each
afternoon we scrape their shit and
each day we pile it up, each week we
load it on the conveyor belts through
the great funnels and each month it
gets sent to the refinery…”


T H E    F E R V E N T   C H R I S T I A N

“…Our father who is in heaven,
hallowed be your name, your
kingdom come within this great
ark and your will be done as it is in
heaven. Give us each day our daily
guano and forgive our negligence to
your creatures and forgive those who
trespass against us. Lead us not again
to the temptations of our past and
deliver us to a future. For yours is the
kingdom the birds and all, forever in
this endless ocean, Amen…”


T H E    F A T H E R

“…It takes around 30mins before I
reach my home module. It has been
a tough day at the factory, the last
shipment for the year has now gone
to Abu Dhabi. I assume its for the
sheik’s private palace where it will
fertilised the desert land into lush
gardens. The governing body of the
floating island have been having a
few meetings with the local leaders
of the residential modules and
there have been plans for a more
secure mooring by the beaches of
the mainland. Of course normal life
would still maintain its just instead
of anchored by the ocean we will
moor it on the beach and they say
a better connection back to our
mainland customers and our kids
going to school and university. They
say our residential module will land
on Beaconcove as some of the Jolo
people were received very well not
long ago. I am not sure what the other
communities have decided to do with
theirs. Others say they are planning
Brighton and others say Dockland
but who knows maybe we’ll just
float on this ocean forever. I for one
am happy with our floating city. I’ve
been here since I can remember. It
has become my home, my island and
my city. I like the ocean; the ocean is
where we belong…”


T H E    W O R K E R

“…My morning job was to patch
up the roof of the granulator. The
factory and processing module are
about to disengage with the farm
and refinery. It’s a spectacle as I
have the best seat in the house. It
has become a new tradition with all
the workers in the farm and refinery
to witness and celebrate a year of
harvest to be sold to surrounding
lands. They have collected the yearly
harvest and are about to process and
package the refined goods. Earthy
hues of rust, yellows and browns
enter the retrofitted building taken
from the motherland. I remember
my grandfather telling us the story
of how his great grandfather help
manage the relocation of the old
abandoned building and fitted a
factory inside. The creation of the
new factory was to relieve space from
the central building of the refinery
as demands of the guano goods
increased and more refinery workers
needed to be accommodated. Now
an exact replica of an old processing
building from photographs of the
great fabled land was recreated to
become a processing facility that
prepared the packaged goods for
shipment. Large creates on wooden
pallets are transported from the
factory to the processing facility and
are to be loaded on transport boats…”


T H E    S T O W A W A Y

“…The dark is where I linger.
Everyone going about with his or
her daily routines or this and that.
I barely made it when they had the
arks return one last time in Nauru,
the sinking ship of the pacific. There
was not much of a future back there,
an environment scarred by greed
and left to decay. We were exiled
there long ago by those that will
not be named where generations
have passed and we are still living
like rats. We were on our way to
escape the terrors that roamed our
previous land. We knew there has
been a slow progressive exodus and
for a long time we tried to get on
but the officials of the land I do not
speak of have prevented us to enter.
Many of our Nauruan friends have
tried to smuggle large groups but
were intercepted at Port Moresby.
Still we try and a family of whom I
shared knowledge of my agricultural
past showed them the possibilities
of hydroponic farming and for their
floating cities to be self-sustaining.
Fortunately, I was alone as it is hard
to smuggle when you have babies
and children crying. I am lucky and
in return I help set up the family
farm. Now, as I lurk through the
dark colonnades I am ready to step
off and embark on my own journey
to another place for the remaining of
my years…”


T H E    S P E C T A T O R S

Bazza: He flew out of nowhere!
That was bloody brilliant play there,
Jacko. Mark of the century I tell ya.
You heard and you saw it here first
folks on the floating barge sponsored
by our Nauruan Neighbours and The
Guano Gold Enterprise, the critical
game for the bombers and boy that
mark secured them a sixer.
Jacko: Fair oath Baz these Tigers
have not started the first quarter well.
The Bombers had made them run
their tails between their legs.
Bazza: Bloody right there mate.
Jacko: Tell ya what Baz, this venue,
first time ever with the Enterprise as
the major sponsor for this year’s AFL
season it is a beautiful day by the sea.
Bazza: I do wonder about those balls
being kicked out in the water.
Jacko: I was speaking with The
Manager and he said they’ve run a
perimeter of ball catchers that will
fetch the balls kicked out of the barge
and they have plenty of ball supply I
Bazza: True dat. And for another first
we have spectators on their yachts,
their hired Nauruan water taxis,
their dingys around the perimeter
and everyone arriving by boat to
watch this momentous event.
Jacko: It is truly spectacular scene


T H E    B U Y E R

“…Oh Darling me, my heirloom
tomatoes need their monthly feed
and there is no more of guano! I need
to pop down Collins to the shop.
Oh I do love coming to the shop,
the marble, and the beautiful birds
on display with all the interesting
artefacts from Nauru, It is like
museum. There’s always a waiting
line and now Vogue magazine
featured the shop and its product it
will be even more popular than ever
before. Of course the hipster kids of
Brunswick discovered a little shop by
the university a few years ago ran by a
young couple who now have invested
their earning with the backing of
the Guano Gold Enterprise. Now
they have claimed back a portion
of Nauru House. The story is just
divine. I just love it…There was a big
commotion from the public to not
let the aviary development happen.
As what happens VCAT approved
the construction, I just love it. It is
fabulous darling…”


T H E    M O T H E R

“…Just another day in paradise. It’s
just what I tell myself that. The kids
running around like crazy, of course
we no longer need to tell them to
stay from the edge it has almost
become second nature to them living
on the modules. I need to hang the
clothes… Mrs. Openheimer from
the next module is having another
women’s get together to discuss the
management of the orchards and
I need to finish these tasks before I
pop down and take a water taxi to
M4RM55. There still so much to do
with the daily catchment of octopus I
needed to prepare for them to be sold
to those who have placed an order,
first there is Betty and she ordered 8
tentacles pickled and marinated then
Gary who ordered twelve heads, and
Cameron who just wanted a couple
of bottles of fresh spices from our
spice garden…”


T H E    M A N A G E R

“…The strong ammonia smell fills
my nostrils as I observe from the silo
platforms. Just another 4:00pm tea
break a syringe on my right hand,
always ready, always prepared. It
is an irony that I must manage the
refinery, a man who is deathly allergic
to the soot of burnt guano. I must
carry the task of management passed
down from my mother’s lineage and
uphold the family’s contribution to
the great ark. My cigarette refills the
air inside me as the containers below
move in choreography. I witness 8
hours a day, everyday, every week
this spectacle. It is a constant cycle;
each month the gathered fresh
guano enters the barricaded fort.
It is tipped to the grand conveyor
belt that passes through the burners
and eventually to the granulator.
The process repeats 4 times in 1
month. The secrets of our refining
processes have always been sought
after from our competitors and
many undercover spies have tried to
steal our secrets. I guess generations
after the departure from the fabled
motherland; the enterprise has
allowed us to perfect the process and
has become envy to all, especially the
Peruvians. In reality, the walls are
just a show to distract perpetrators
and a false safe in the hull contains
useless documents. The real secrets
lies with me, of which I will tell my
daughters who will pass it on as what
my mother did with her only son…”


T H E    D R E A M E R

“…I Remember when the Coach said
to always stay fit. Always eat healthy.
I was one of the chosen few from a
group of girls that competed to get
into the training program last year
for the Olympics. The scholarship
program was what I’ve always
wanted since I was just playing at
the bird nursery of M2RM502, my
home module. The gym was going
to be my new home. It is made of
two distinct buildings. The pyramid
roofed was the training room and
the rectangular topped roof was to
be our boarding school. Only a select
6 boys and 6 girls were admitted to
the program. Next door to us is the
football school. Fitness and sport
are core programs in our schooling.
We are told to be fit and healthy, but
once in a while someone manages to
smuggle a can of spam, a delicious
salty mixture and a group of us
share this delicacy. Our diets consist
of noddy bird’s breast, apparently
contains protein twice that of
chicken breasts, vegetables grown
from the home modules and fish. I
am fortunate to be in the program
and it gives me hope for the future
and walking through these ruins
brings back the memories of my


T H E    L O V E R S

“…She was a land dweller and I
resided in Module RM3C22, She
often came to the guano farm to view
the many different kinds of birds. The
first time I saw her was when I was
releasing a batch of juvenile frigates
that had just learnt how to fly ready
for training. When I met her she was
starting her studies in Ornithology
at RMIT and she says the floating
aviary has fascinated her ever since
she was a little girl. I’m due back to
the great blue city for next semester
at the University for finals. We’ve
conversed about the different birds
and after a few months I showed her
where we do the breeding program,
preserving the endemic reed warbler,
which comes from our motherland.
I showed her around our residential
module. Right underneath the apple
trees with the residential module in
the distance we kissed. We’ve been
seeing each other for 3 years now
and she’s due for graduation. We
planned for a future, and that future
lies within the great city where we
will set up a city aviary for research…”


T H E    O B S E R V E R

“…No one really knows when these
floating cities arrived or the reason
behind their arrival. It is a lost
memory. Our history say their island
was so rich that they can afford to
build these great arks that allowed its
citizen to live in and sail around the
world. Others say they were fleeing a
flood and some say they have always
been on boats since the dawn of
their civilisation. Our own history
records simply state that there were
negotiations made and allowed for
these fabled people to stay within the
waters of our Great Blue City. It is
quite a spectacle seeing their rusting
hulls and rotting wood glisten in
reflection. I do wonder as I look out
into the bay at the remains of the
decaying city of its history, past and
its people and what they did, how
they lived and who they were…”

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