A MURAL in Geelong West to celebrate cancer survivors and inspire hope has been named as one of the best public art experiences in the nation.
The “Brave and the Beautiful” painted by Jan Juc artist Kirsten Walsh has been shortlisted for the 2020 Australian Street Art Awards’ best external mural award.
The mural spreads across the entire side wall of the store, with vignettes expressing the journey of cancer sufferers – the smiling face of a bald woman on a pink background representing breast cancer, a girl wearing a beanie on a green background pays tribute to sufferers of brain cancer and a young child survivor holding a dandelion blows messages of hope and love to families, sufferers, survivors and others impacted by cancer.
“This mural is a great example of where well-conceived, beautifully designed and well executed street art works as a community service,” judges said.
“It’s truly an inspirational and comforting artwork that has enormous community appeal and, at the same time, helps create a vibrant precinct that will draw in visitors from outside the area.”
Judges also recognised the role played by art agents, Bells Fine Art, and commended Bakers Delight on choosing to support the project.
Walsh was overjoyed when she heard she had been named a finalist.
“I am honoured to be named a finalist for the 2020 Best External Mural award, the warmth and strength of the women depicted in this mural really speak to the community and this wall is now a focal point for the community and locals of Geelong,” she said.
Bells Fine Art Studio director Belinda White said she was thrilled with the shortlisting.
“Kirsten is a homegrown talent and has created an impressive depiction of these muses, setting a very high standard for street art in the region.”
Bakers Delight Geelong West owners Suranga and Jo Sena said the mural’s impact was astounding.
“We have customers who come in and thank us for our vision in commissioning this mural and we were thrilled to have an opportunity to invest in the arts industry and create a tourist attraction for Geelong.”
The winners in all eight Australian Street Art Awards categories will be announced on March 2.
“The Awards showcase regions like Geelong that are using outdoor art to transform their infrastructure and streetscapes, while educating Australians about the magnificent array of publicly-accessible art that can be found in every corner of the country,” awards director Liz Rivers said.