Friday, December 28, 2012

Painting The Roses Red

At first glance, inner city Perth is not the most inviting or aesthetically pleasing location in the world; especially in summer, when it goes above 40°C in the shade and burning heat radiates off every surface.

Along the train line is often the worst, with all the wires and power poles and cement everywhere. Yet this is also where some of my favourite street art lives.

This huge mural, for instance, faces the tracks and can be seen through the left-hand windows of the train as you head into the city.

I've loved this since I was a child - but this was actually the first time I've gone to have a proper close look. (Click to enlarge.)

In many ways it reminds me of the angels and demons depicted in the Vatican Museums.

(See more pics here)

The use of colour is similar, although the angel figure is dark skinned in the mural.

The combatants are also on an equal footing. Neither is above the other, neither has the strategic (or moral?) advantage.

The contrast between cave paintings on the demonic side and a more classical art style on the angelic side suggests a battle between the 'primitive' and the 'civilised.' Yet both ride vampiric steeds, and both have their faces obscured. So interesting.

Of course, this painting is not housed in a controlled space. It isn't surrounded by guards and security cameras. It is exposed to the weather, and there are no opening hours. People can come along and do whatever they like to it at any time.

Despite the odd contribution from the public, the painting has remained bright and relatively unmolested, given the location.

So good. If anyone ever tries to paint over it (as happened to another of my favourites recently. Why replace an awesome image with a blank wall? Ever?) I will be getting a little bit shirty.

There is quite a lot of brilliant street art near the tracks in this area, including this amazing Alice in Wonderland themed mural, which runs along the outer wall of the Perth City Farm

I love the way this painting merges the urban with the fantastical - incorporating graffiti style script into the landscape.

Uh-oh. I think the Tweedles have been out tagging.

Maybe not a good idea to have a bunny guarding the seedlings!

But wait - there's more...

These remind me of the Wormouths in Commander Keen:

Nice work, DeeJo.

And last but not least, in a nearby car-park:.


People pass these paintings all day without even looking, like they're nothing special. (Although they do start paying attention once someone starts taking photos - funny that, how the camera bestows 'value' on its lowly subjects...)

If anyone has names for/links to more of the artists, please let me know and I'll add them.

P.S. Happy New Year - thanks for visiting, I appreciate ya.

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