If you are driving across the Mandurah Bridge you will notice something new.
Fourteen new banners have been installed to celebrate spring and Mandurah’s beautiful flora, fauna and marine environment.
The banners have been designed by local artists, Ricky Gibson, Lisa Payton, Paul Fleetham and Debra Scidone.
For artist Lisa Payton, having her work adorn three of the banners has special significance; Lisa’s grandfather was involved in building the previous bridge.
“It truly is an honour and my grandad would be very proud,” says Lisa.
The new banners will replace the banners designed by another local artist Emma Blyth. But don’t worry if you particularly loved Emma’s work – they will be rotated back in.
Not only have the banners been designed by local artists they have also been made by a local business – Bryson Canvas.
“The City is keen to provide real employment opportunities for our artists and the banners are a great way for us to financially support talented locals and showcase their work,” says Mayor Rhys Williams.
“Talking to our community prior to and during the bridge redevelopment, we know that public art is really important. It’s a way for us to celebrate and reflect on what is unique or special to us, and helps us connect with this place and with each other,” says the Mayor.
Work is already underway on special banners for Christmas in Mandurah, which kicks of November 30.
Debra Scidone is an award winning Western Australian artist, most recently receiving the highly commended award for the North West Flora and Fauna section of the Cossack Art Awards 2018.
Intrigued by the creative process, each of Debra’s pieces adapts to its environment and nature is at the forefront of her work.
She enjoys the journey and the challenges of each artwork and hopes to leave the viewer to find something of their own interpretation in her art. The Mandurah Bridge banners presented their own unique challenge of creating designs that were visually effective in the limited space of the narrow banners.
Payton creates prints that deliberately leave the subject open to interpretation, enhancing the sense of connection between artwork and viewer, and are designed to draw the viewer into recognizing nature in all its beauty of color and texture.
It’s this recognition of the land that Payton delivers a positive environmental message, one of respect and responsibility towards the earth. Her style of art work is dynamic, bright, vibrant, colorful, expressive, energetic and displays a lively mood.
People viewing her artwork regularly comment on what they can recognise in her 'Abstract Earth Art' paintings.
Many people express enjoyment when viewing Lisa’s artwork because they can recognise a landmark where they have been or discover something that is recognisable to them.
Ricky’s practice developed whilst working within the tattoo community, this subculture allowed him to work in an intimate environment, personally collaborating with consideration to the artwork’s permanence and individuality. It also helped develop his ability to adapt to various forms and art movements to draw inspiration from and expand.
Ricky graduated from North Metropolitan TAFE in graphic design and print production, expanding his practice onto a digital platform.
This experience has manifested itself in public mural projects where Ricky has been commissioned for varying public and private works for several organisations.
Ricky’s ambitions recently led him to write and illustrate a published children’s book, resulting in an increased understanding of the world of literature.
These interests and a qualification in carpentry have allowed Ricky to merge the different mixed media, materials, scales, forms and cultures into a diverse and evolving skill set, creating a unique and innovative art approach and practice.
Paul Fleetham has produced art in many differing styles and mediums in his journey as an artist over the last 30 plus years.
His first artistic training was in graphic design, which incorporated photography as well as film and video. He followed this with training in silkscreen printing, closely followed by a degree in visual arts at Edith Cowan University as a painting major.
Paul has worked commercially as a graphic designer and mural painter, but his current work is focused on making fine art, predominantly digitally based.
Paul currently works with a Melbourne based interior design business that reproduce his arts (and photography) as prints.
His banners for the new Mandurah Bridge were based on photographs taken of the local environment, in particular images of the estuary. Most were taken either around, or from, the old Mandurah Bridge. Although this art is photographically based, the images have been manipulated using photographic software to the point of abstraction.