The Urban Mural, or The Wall as I choose to call it, is our first project in Studio research and Practice. We have been split into groups and instructed to choose a blank wall in Nelson to decorate. We then had to choose a theme of either body, environment or semiotics, on which to base our mural.
As I am double booked in other classes for most of Mondays, I came into this project after initial decisions had been made. Well it saves me some brain cells I guess! Had I been there I would have chosen the Kush Coffee wall in Church street (my favourite coffee stop), and I would have gone for maybe body or semiotics. Environment is fine though as it can fit most ideas, the wall being part of an environment in itself.
So we have a wall… a plain blank wall…. in Hardy Street, and the wall wants something… I would go so far as to say that the wall needs something. It is pretty drab and boring – right?
or… maybe not quite so drab:
This wall faces the oncoming pedestrians, they walk towards it, and they probably don’t notice it… So, it is currently a big wasted opportunity. I would like this wall to enhance the life of everyone who walks towards it. I would like it to make them think in a different way, about life, about reality and about our perception of reality. I want the wall to transform the viewer, in some way. Whether it is only the moment, a day, or the rest of a life that is changed.
The wall is at the end of a historical building which currently houses a pub, cafe, sports bar. It is in my opinion a totally uninspiring place, where the only chance of one’s perception being changed is through a haze of alcohol to the sound of rugby commentators. I believe sometimes they have a decent band though. At right angles to the wall is an estate agents, again not very inspiring, but hang on… what about building castles in the air? How about some alternative real estate, an earth-ship maybe? Or the very words could be played upon… real estate… imaginary estate… the wall as the estate of the artists and the viewer.
I see a lot of possibilities, but I like the idea of a view through to another world, a journey to a different mindset, going through doors of perception but without the mescalin.
Oh and do note the beautiful Genko tree. There is something about this tree, and those tiny pink flowers growing against all odds, out of the crack at the bottom of the wall, something that says ‘Look, we are here…!’ I want our wall to shout LOOK!! I AM HERE!!!!
All photos by author.