EIGHTH AVENUE in Maylands has been transformed into a lush art space as part of the local council’s commitment to rejuvenating the town centre.
The median strip has been lined with native plants and trees, and giant planter boxes will feature works by local artists.
The first artist to be showcased is Eva Fernandez, who was born in Toronto but now lives and works in Maylands.
Fernandez has exhibited in Brookfield Place and Arcade 800 in Perth, the WA Art Gallery and the national galleries of Victoria and Adelaide.
Her Eighth Avenue work After the Tea Party explores the complex legacy of colonialism.
Bayswater mayor Dan Bull said the city’s ‘Art on Eighth’ project was a great way to showcase local art while greening up the streetscape.
“At the city’s place activation workshops the community told us they want to see Maylands become a lush green town centre while continuing to celebrate the arts culture that is so prevalent here,” he says.
“Street trees will be grown in the new planter boxes as a trial for areas limited by space or underground services.
“We know that trees have traffic calming effects as well as improving walkability along streets, which is ideal for Eighth Avenue.
“If you’re an artist who has a connection to Maylands, I encourage you to get in touch with the city’s place manager to express your interest in exhibiting your work through Art on Eighth,” he said.
The planter boxes are the latest initiative by the city to revitalise Eighth Ave, with previous measures including road resurfacing, new street furniture and upgraded street bins.
If the planters go down well with locals, the city will consider putting more on the verge.
UPDATE: That was quick. It took just days for a miscreant to vandalise the installation, pulling all the native plants out of one of the boxes on the weekend and dumping them on the ground. Bayswater councillor Catherine Ehrhardt tells us she’s reported it to the council and they’ve then got onto police. Apparently the coppers have footage of a suspect causing a ruckus further down the street but the planter boxes themselves were out of frame.
by STEPHEN POLLOCK