Location: Hemmings Street, Dandenong
Artist: Beci Orpin and Dandenong West Primary School students
A display of bold public artworks will be installed along the shopping strip of Hemmings Street, Dandenong, as part of Council’s street upgrade project. In 2019, community members were asked about the type of art they wanted to see delivered. An overwhelming response supported engaging the local community in the artmaking process as well as bold abstract colours and designs and integration with gardens and landscaping. Council sought the expertise of well-known illustrator Beci Orpin, who developed a co-design process to transform the artworks of local students into world-quality public art. The result speaks for itself.
During COVID-19 restrictions, select students from Dandenong West Primary School were hand delivered craft supplies and an activity. Beci tasked them with creating pet rocks and pebble creatures. The creative kids made some of the kookiest, cute and quirky creatures, showing off their talent for imagination and design. The finished works were then photographed and sent to Beci, who transformed the creatures into the fabulous mural, totems and sculptural pieces.
The artwork will transform the shopping strip into a funky, London-style high street. The bright, bold colours scream fun and community from a distance. The totems welcome visitors as they drive, walk or ride towards the shops. The combined effect of the artworks giving a strong sense of community pride and engagement in their local shopping strip.
This public artwork has been made possible by funding from the Australian Government through the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program.