Would like to introduce you to their spectacular Bicentenary Mural
Photography and video by James Fox
Turning 200 years old is a BIG deal, so when you hit that almighty milestone you want to celebrate it in a memorable kind of way, and that’s exactly what Worn Out Wares & WOW Flowers in Singleton have done. Tying in perfectly with Singleton's Bicentenary celebrations in March, the team revealed a stunning mural that has been created on the sidewall of their beautiful café, florist and homewares store.
Born and raised in Singleton, Worn Out Wares and WOW Flowers owner Louise Christensen and her family have a long history and strong connection to the town, today the family connection continues with each of Louise's three daughters taking a role within the much-loved business. When the idea of a mural was thrown about Louise's middle daughter, Lili, headed up the project, with Lili and artist Myrrhine Fabricius explaining in more detail,
“The wall represents the history and future of George Street, Singleton, and brings some vibrancy and diversity to the street. We wanted the painting to breathe new life into the alleyway and celebrate the history of Singleton at the same time.”
“The exposed brick wall alludes to its earlier life as a bakery, it was important to reflect this transformation in the mural by incorporating a bright colour palette to represent the new and to depict the old through early sheep frontages. The project was supported by Singleton Council and we see it as a celebration of community, culture and collaboration."
Myrrhine Fabricius was the Newcastle based artist who was given the task of bringing the mural to life, with Myrrhine provided a brief and the space to create something spectacular on. To get some more details about the project and how it all came together we chatted to Myrrhine.
Myrrhine, the mural is incredible, how did you feel about taking on a project that had such historical significance?
The project evolved in an organic way through iterations of the site and it was quickly established how special this collaboration was going to be and became a joyous process - from start to finish. With an initial abstract expression of colour, the spirit of Worn Out Wares and WOW Flowers was captured. The incorporation of the street happened seamlessly as Lili and her family revealed their family connections to Singleton.
Had you undertaken a mural of this scale previously?
The mural for Worn out Wares was my first official mural - I have entered competitions previously and prepared digital concepts but never physically painted a mural prior to this project with Lili and her family.
When you receive a brief for a project such as this what's the first step you take to get started?
My first step is to do a site visit and take lots of photos. I want to absorb everything and be free of a specific outcome. I translate these images into digital collages and print them off to become the starting point for drawings.
The colours you've used are beautiful, did you work closely with Lili to get these right or did Lili pretty much give you creative freedom?
Lili was clear from the beginning that the colour palette needed to be bright and cheerful. This made it easy for me to explore the specific colours that were needed to achieve this. Some colours were inspired by observing Singleton and others came from the flower arrangements inside the shop. However, the key to finding the beautiful colours was using quality paint and testing the colours in real life.
How long did the project take you to complete?
Concept phase happened over a few months and the painting of the mural took a few days short of a fortnight - off and on - depending on weather!
Are murals the style of art you enjoy doing most?
I would have to say yes - nothing can prepare you for painting a mural but if you trust the process, it is most rewarding.
The mural was completed in March this year, do you have any new projects underway at the moment?
I (hopefully) in these uncertain times have a solo art show coming up later in the year in Newcastle. I am currently studying a masters of architecture at the University of Newcastle and will have my graduating exhibition in November. Also have some conversations happening in relation to future murals but not in the design phase yet.