Mu­ral set to em­power, in­spire

The Invercargill Eye - - FRONT PAGE - RE­BECCA MOORE

Street art is be­com­ing ‘‘a thing’’ around big­ger cities in the coun­try, and In­ver­cargill artist Kieran Burten­shaw, aka Murky Murk, hopes the city can jump on board.

He thinks street art and mu­rals are be­com­ing popular in big cities like Mel­bourne, but also Christchurch and Welling­ton.

‘‘The cul­ture is more there. Street artists de­serve to have a space.’’

He wants to bring out what makes In­ver­cargill great, and in at­tempt­ing to make In­ver­cargill a brighter, more vi­brant city he is propos­ing to bring in­ter­na­tional artist Ja­son Parker to the city to cre­ate a mu­ral on Spey St.

Bring­ing in an in­ter­na­tional artist would step up the qual­ity and in­spire peo­ple more, he said.

The planned art­work would de­pict a girl’s face look­ing at the sun, which Burten­shaw be­lieves will be em­pow­er­ing, in­spi­ra­tional and beau­ti­ful.

He saw Parker as the per­fect fit be­cause of his well-known por­traits.

Parker said as a Kiwi liv­ing in Mel­bourne, he had al­ways had the de­sire to pro­duce art­works in his home coun­try.

‘‘New Zealand will al­ways be my spir­i­tual home and I con­stantly miss it. To have the op­por­tu­nity to come paint and leave my mark is an op­por­tu­nity I would cher­ish.’’

The two artists had known each other for a while, and Parker be­lieves they have their eyes on the same goal.

‘‘I’m known for my vi­brant colours and thought­ful de­signs,’’ Parker said. ‘‘I want to help liven [and] brighten up the city with a mu­ral that hon­ours its sur­round­ings.

‘‘With the projects I have worked on in the past, it re­ally be­comes a talk­ing point and a draw­card for the city.’’ He be­gan his ca­reer as an artist about a year after he moved to Mel­bourne from Auck­land and leav­ing his job as a graphic de­signer.

‘‘My art­work usu­ally re­volves around visual metaphor-type por­trai­ture. I use the por­trait as a base to layer on var­i­ous thoughts and feel­ings. I de­scribe my work as am­bigu­ously evoca­tive and emo­tive.’’

The pro­posed mu­ral would cost about $13,500 for flights, ac­com­mo­da­tion, re­sources and wages. It is early days, but so far Burten­shaw has about $2000 to­wards the project and is look­ing for spon­sors.

If he reaches his tar­get, paint­ing will start in Fe­bru­ary.

RE­BECCA MOORE/STUFF

In­ver­cargill artist Kieran Burten­shaw, aka Murky Murk, at the mu­ral site on Spey St.

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