Most of you have already seen it on Facebook and Instagram, but I have to mention my milestone here too. For later, so that there can be a life before and after the mural in Newcastle.
This project was part of “The Big Picture Fest” where 12 artists each got a wall to paint, which they had to complete in 5 days. It had taken place in other cities in Australia before, but never in Newcastle. And in those other cities, international muralists were often flown in. This time that was not possible due to corona, because the borders are closed in Australia. So the organisation had to look more locally when searching for artists. And that gave me the opportunity to come into the picture.
The first mural that I (we!) already created in Maitland apparently made an impression, as I was chosen to be one of the 12 artists. We were assigned a wall in a back street in Cook’s Hill, but I was glad that I would soon be able to add another big public artworks on my wall-CV.
Just before we were to start I suddenly got another wall. The scaffolding would have to be placed too close to the power lines and that was not allowed.
My new wall was at a busy intersection on the main road through Newcastle. We had to adjust the design quickly, but that was no problem. This wall was much more visible!
The owners of the building were so taken with our design that they asked if we wanted to make it a bit wider.
Yes, we were happy to do that.
But then a large billboard of the former tenants had to be removed from the wall. We were not allowed to do that ourselves, because it was still electrically connected. However, the owners of the building would arrange for the sign to be removed.
It was a fun week. Every day we stood on the scaffold from 10 AM to 6 PM, while thousands of cars passed by. And hundreds of pedestrians too. We got our mural finished on time… only the billboard had still not been taken off the facade. And that part of the building on the left with that sign on was also not accessible from the scaffold. We were able to partially paint it when an operator was available for the ready-to-use boom lift for a short while, but that was only for half an afternoon… not long enough to finish that part.
It is now a week later. In the meantime the scaffold is taken down. The billboard is still there. Maybe the boom lift is still there too.
It is now further in the hands of the owners. It is a pity that of the 12 artists I am now the only one with a kind of “not-fully finished” wall. In the pictures you can see that the ribbons on the left have no highlights and are less yellowish than the ones on the right. So that still needs to be done.
I don’t know when or how we are going to finish this, but when it is done I will also post pictures of what the other 11 artists have made.