In a trend that is becoming ever more popular with our Nation’s cities, the City of Melbourne is launching a new public art program – Public Art Melbourne.
Public Art Melbourne is a council initative that encourages artists to “reinvent, interpret, imagine and create” in Melbourne’s public spaces. The newly launched public art program features two key programs: Public Art Melbourne Lab and Public Art Melbourne Projects.
The program encourages artists to get involved in a reimagining of the City’s public spaces by exploring their creativity and sharing their vision in the public domain. ‘Test Sites’ will be set up in the central CBD, via a series of workshops, that will offer artists the opportunity for their artistic expression to flourish – and provide a more immediate response from the public.
Councillor Rohan Leppert, Chair of Council’s Arts Portfolio, said “Public Art Melbourne is a courageous public art program that opens the city to artists to create everyday encounters with the unexpected. The aim is to embed contemporary art in everyday life and create opportunities for artists to contribute to, develop and reinterpret the public domain.”
A series of workshops for the city’s Test Sites will be hosted by experienced artists, mentoring applicants to research and develop their ideas onsite. Funding has been created to assist artists in exploring their creative vision to the tune of up to $3000, as well as access to artist mentorships, workshops and location assistance for negotiating the city’s public spaces and obtaining permits.
The Test Sites aim to focus on the process of creation rather than the finished product, encouraging the development of artistic expression for its own rewards. The hope is that artists will be inspired by their urban environment and use that passion to generate a reflection of the city in its own milieu.
Renowned arts leader Natalie Kind has been appointed as Chief Curator of the new program. Natalie will work with artists to develop five temporary and experimental artworks for nominated sites across the municipality. The mentoring artists for the Test Site workshops include Cameron Robbins, Bianca Hester, Ash Keating and Jason Maling.
The launch of this experimental program in August is an encouraging public endeavour.
For more information and to register interest for the first Test Site series visit www.melbourne.vic.gov.au/publicart