Above: “Swanston Street”, painted on Friday at RMIT near the entrance to the Kaleide Theatre in memory of the brutal police removal ordered by Melbourne City Council of the Occupy Melbourne Protests (http://occupymelbourne.org/). Similar things have been happening all around the world. The mural also symbolises the encroachment of big business, with the backup of police and military, into public space. I often feel sorry for police, security and soldiers as they are used as pawns in the game of big business and government. Although, too many of them seemed to be enjoying it this day. Probably pretty exciting for them, all dressed up with all their gear on. Boys and their toys, is all I can say.
The boys in blue.
Off the Wall: is street art an appropriate medium to voice human rights issues?
Presented by the Human Rights Arts & Film Festival
Wednesday, 23 May 2012, 6:00 pm
RMIT Kaleide Theatre
Public discourse surrounding street art is dominated by the continuing debate about cultural legitimacy and notions of ownership of public space. Yet, such discussions conceal one of the most important functions of street art, the creative freedom to be powerfully political and socially current. What are the issues engaging Melbourne’s street artists? Are human rights issues some of them? And are we giving our artists the freedom they need to engage the community? This forum is designed to bring together artists and the community to think about and discuss the role street art can and does play in shaping awareness in the urban realm.
With: Boo, Fiona Hillary, Kate Shaw, Lachlan Macdowall and myself.