About PUBLIC in the Wheatbelt | Part of the PUBLIC Silo Trail
In March 2015 as part of FORM’s 2015 PUBLIC festival of art and activation internationally renowned artists Phlegm (UK) and Hense (USA) transformed eight CBH Group grain silos into iconic works of art dramatically responding to the Wheatbelt’s heartland of patchwork fields, russet blond hills and unhurried charm. The eight silos, each 35 metres high, took 16 days and around 740 liters of paint to create, and resulted in Australia’s first silo mural.
With boom lifts, aerosols and enamel, the artists splashed a series of 10- storey murals across eight huge storage towers belonging to grain handler CBH Group. Phlegm painted intricate, black and white storybook characters, all long limbed and whimsical, manning impossible flying machines with wings and wheels, baskets and balloons, anchors and drop weights. HENSE made dizzying colours, patterns and and designs dance on epic blocks of blue, purple and yellow.
The silos have become a vivid landmark visible form the vast curving stretch of highway connecting Northam to Perth, a playful honouring of the town’s mainstay agricultural industry inscribed across its most iconic architectural forms, a 30-metre-tall Wheatbelt welcome beacon and the most unlikely of tourist attractions.