Council operation puts ‘street art’ in its place

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PHOTO: Stanmore, NSW resident Jody is a beneficiary the Perfect Match program.

TTN: 9th August 2014: Marrickville Council in Sydney’s inner-west has tackled what was a graffiti “problem” head on – by making cultural attractions out of matching up local artists with spaces available for their style of art.

The greatest benefit is of course finding a sustainable, effective and affordable solution to the problem of illegal graffiti – and creating an attraction for intra-city visitors at the same time.

Marrickville Council is just southwest of the City of Sydney council borders. The area has a lot of industrial zoning and long been popular with migrants to Australia. As Sydney house prices rocketed and a generation of young house-buyers have been pushed out of the inner city, some traditionally cheap or industrial suburbs have been gentrified*, and Marrickville Council have worked to accommodate the tastes of new ratepayers.

The Perfect Match program ‘played Cupid’ between hardworking artists that need exposure for their work and, for example, homeowners with bare walls that were being constantly graffitied. The Council did this by setting up a sort of art trail meet-and-greet so that owners of spaces could be visited by potential artists.

Marrickville Mayor Jo Haylen is excited to be giving exposure to artists whose works are now sought after by the public.

The below comments are from the artists and a homeowner whose walls are being decorated, rather than graffitied:
Anne-Louise Dadak, artist:  “We got partnered with Jody and it was kind of an amazing partnership because she automatically really responded to our style, it was a really kind of quick and beautiful design/idea process.”

Jody, homeowner: “Without even knowing it I’d actually seen the girls works on other buildings around the area, like Alfalfa House which I absolutely love, so when I came and met them in person, got introduced, we talked about our ideas, everything just fell into place…”

Laura Pike, artist, Province Studios: “…Someone’s house and they live here all the time and they’re suffering from having to repaint their wall all the time… so It was really nice for us to talk to Jody and figure out what she likes and collaborate on this so her otherwise grey wall suddenly becomes an artwork.”

Perfect Match complements ‘MOST’ (Marrickville Open Studio Trail) which takes visitors and residents on tours of Marrickville’s artistic underbelly. See more information on MOST here.

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Perfect Match

From the Marrickville Council website (added to TTN 9th August, date of origin on council site unknown)

Marrickville hosts Australia’s most outstanding collection of street art. To build on this we invited local property owners to find their Perfect Match by registering interest to have their walls transformed by artists. Council then played Cupid, matching property owners with renowned street artists to transform 14 public walls into spectacular artworks.

The inaugual Perfect Match weekend tours and celebration was held on 5–6 July 2014. This presented the opportunity to get out and about on foot, bicycle and bus to meet artists at work and learn all about our local street art culture. See the Perfect Match program for a map of selected street art locations.

TTN Note:

*gentrify |ˈjentrəˌfī|
verb (gentrifies, gentrifying, gentrified) [ with obj. ]
renovate and improve (esp. a house or district) so that it conforms to middle-class taste.
• (usu. as adj. gentrified) make (someone or their way of life) more refined or dignified.

Below is ‘The Settler’ by renowned street artist Fintan Magee, also painted in Marrickville.


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