About PUBLIC Art In Ravensthorpe
Commissioned by FORM for CBH Group, PUBLIC Art in Ravensthorpe’s Six Stages of Banksia baxteri is a 25 metre high wildflower inspired mural painted across three CBH Group silos in Ravensthorpe, Western Australia by acclaimed Fremantle-based artist Amok Island. The project, which entailed 31 days, 338 litres of paint and countless trips up and down the silos in a knuckle boom, is the second in a series of monumental street art murals on grain silos delivered by FORM in partnership with CBH Group over the last 18 months. The first, in the Wheatbelt community of Northam in March 2015, was Australia’s first silo mural project.
Six Stages of Banksia baxteri is Amok Island’s largest mural to date and and incorporated native Western Australian wildlife and flowers to fit with the region’s strong links and connection to wildflowers.
“Each silo side shows a different stage of the flowering cycle of this species of Banksia, only found between Esperance and Albany,” Amok Island said.
“From flower buds, to full bloom, to seedpods developing, drying out and opening. The animals are this species’ main pollinators; the Honey Possum and New Holland Honey eater. The artwork encircles the three silos infinitely; the final silo marks the beginning once again of the first, making a connection with the cycle of the seasons and grain farming processes this area is known for.”
Amok Island’s recently completed commission for CBH silos in Ravensthorpe sits within the Fitzgerald Biosphere, an area of internationally significant biodiversity situated at the border of the Goldfields-Esperance and Great Southern regions. Following the project, in October 2016, the Amsterdam- born, multi-disciplinary artist exhibited a new body of work at FORM Gallery developed around Six Stages of Banksia baxteri and depicting a selection of flora endemic to the Biosphere, an area containing around 20 per cent of Western Australia’s native plant species.
Amok Island’s Fitzgerald Biosphere exhibited in conjunction with Doreen Chapman, a self-titled solo exhibition by one of Western Australia’s rising Aboriginal art stars, Pilbara-based painter Doreen Chapman. Though Chapman and Amok Island each have a very different aesthetic sensibility and relationship to landscape, the pair are linked by their vibrant pastel colour palette, the inspiration they draw from Western Australia’s regional landscape, and their distinctive eye for capturing the unique qualities of the State’s flora and fauna with humour and charm.
Read together, these two solo exhibitions reimagine some of the State’s most remote landscapes, while showcasing the diversity of FORM’s ongoing regional programming. Fitzgerald Biosphere will also feature’s PUBLIC Art In Ravensthorpe, a short film by Peacock Visuals documenting the 31 day process and finished artwork. Watch It Here
Amok Island’s practice spans painting on canvas, screen prints, large-scale murals and sculptural work. He has exhibited his work in The Netherlands, Japan, and Australia and painted murals in over 20 countries worldwide. In 2015 the Wide Walls website listed him as one of the top 10 Dutch urban artists. Since 2013 Amok Island has begun various ongoing sculptural projects using stainless steel and concrete, submerging concrete letter sculptures in various marine environments around Western Australia, and documenting the process of nature taking them over.
Fitzgerald Biosphere exhibited from 13 October until late December.