Beats and brushes

The Tribune (NZ) - - FRONT PAGE - MIRI SCHROETER

An al­ley­way, con­nect­ing two main streets, is go­ing from dingy and dark to vi­brant and light.

Ber­ry­mans Lane, pro­vid­ing ser­vice ac­cess be­tween Broad­way Ave and Main St, is so well-used the city coun­cil thought it needed a spruce-up to make it safer.

On Satur­day, seven artists were let loose with an ar­ray of colours and de­signs, each bring­ing their own flair to the lane dur­ing a day called Beats, Bites and Brushes. An eighth artist, Welling­ton based Si­mon Ormerod painted his de­sign on Fri­day.

Com­ing from Welling­ton, Palmer­ston North, Ash­hurst and Whanganui, all the artists have some con­nec­tion to the city.

Ormerod, re­spon­si­ble for the vi­brant mis­ta­chioed mu­ral, was born here.

Jor­dan Deb­ney, who grew up in Palmer­ston North, but now lives in Welling­ton, said the op­por­tu­nity was too good to pass.

Deb­ney’s de­sign is a geo­met­ric but­ter­fly, which rep­re­sents evolv­ing and grow­ing.

He hoped his psychedelic­coloured de­sign would give peo­ple some­thing to ap­pre­ci­ate when walk­ing down the al­ley­way.

‘‘When I first turned up this morn­ing there were a lot of peo­ple aim­lessly walk­ing up and down. It was a bit eerie.

‘‘I’m hop­ing the art­work will lift that eeri­ness.’’

Deb­ney mainly de­signs prints for cloth­ing brand ALC Ap­parel, but oc­ca­sion­ally does street art.

Ash­hurst’s Carl Roberts trans­formed his blank can­vas into a frog that rep­re­sents one of his New Zealand idols, mu­si­cian Bull­frog Rata.

His aim was to en­cour­age a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude when out ex­pe­ri­enc­ing the city’s nightlife.

Roberts is study­ing to be a pri­mary school teacher, but works on street art as a hobby.

The artists were ap­proached by city coun­cil plan­ner Kee­gan Aplin-Thane af­ter of­fi­cials no­ticed that many peo­ple re­lied on the al­ley­way to get to Broad­way Ave eater­ies.

‘‘We are hop­ing peo­ple will feel more com­fort­able.’’

The artists used spray cans, sten­cils, brushes and rollers to com­plete the works. Light­ing is to be in­stalled by the end of the year.

Aplin-Thane drew in­spi­ra­tion from al­ley­ways in Welling­ton that have un­der­gone sim­i­lar im­prove­ments.

DJ Dirty Hairy, also known as Matt Davies, pro­vided the beats and the Evil Step­son food truck, which spe­cialises in hangi food, served up the ‘‘bites’’.

PHOTO: MUR­RAY WIL­SON/FAIR­FAX NZ

Eight artists help bring colour to Ber­ry­mans Lane.

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