Blue Mountains City Council has been collaborating with a number of local artists to help bring new art works to the town center of Springwood. Launched during the free, community event Stomping Ground on September 17, the murals have been coordinated to activate and beautify the town with the help of a Commonwealth Government RISE grant and Bushfire Recovery and Resilience Fund.
‘Step into my dreams’ at the School of Arts Town Square is a playful ground installation for the center of Springwood. Artist Nastia Gladushchenko put together a mural design celebrating the beautiful crepe myrtle trees that are a feature of Macquarie Road. Nastia surveyed locals about their visions for the future of the township where ‘music, flowers, trees and colours,’ were the most popular responses. Nastia said the intention of the piece is to ‘complement the environment while also bringing a sense of movement and fun to the space’.
Across the road and next to the Community Centre, the IGA wall has been adorned with a bright, collaborative work by artist and designer Ailie Banks and Wiradjuri Street Artist Merindah Funnel. The work titled ‘Care for Community Care for Country’ depicts two women holding the earth in their hands, surrounded by colorful flora. An augmented reality component of the work is due to launch shortly, where visitors to the site will be able to see some animated elements come to life through their mobile phones, accompanied by a slide show of art works from local young people.
Artist Alex GRiLS recently returned to the Blue Mountains after several years undertaking international artist residencies and working in Montreal on large scale mural festivals. Having grown up in Springwood, Alex has been coordinating and inviting artists to add bespoke designs to the walls of local businesses. Additional murals on the Gazette building, Springwood IGA, One Two One Grocer and more, can now be discovered in the town thanks to his networks in the street art scene. Alex GRiLS says: “It’s great to come back to my hometown and be supported by the Council and local businesses to find sanctioned street art spaces. I hope people will enjoy these new art works and see how murals can add to the character of a place.”
Paul Brinkman, Manager of Arts & Cultural Services at Blue Mountains City Council said: “We are thrilled to see these new public art activations being embraced by locals and visitors to Springwood. With the talent available locally, we are incredibly lucky to facilitate this world class art to enliven our villages and towns.”
Council will be working on a Springwood Street Art Stroll brochure, after the great success of the Katoomba Urban Art Trail, with featured murals stretching from the Blue Mountains Theater forecourt, all the way to the Blue Mountains Gazette headquarters at the other end of Macquarie Street .
Photo: (1) Artist Nastia Gladushchenko with her ‘Step into my dreams’ artwork at the School of Arts Town Square, in Springwood. (2) Street Art Talk with Alex GRiLS and Council’s Coordinator of Cultural Development Katrina Noorbergen during ‘Stomping Ground’.