Heads up for more art

VINCENT council is set to spend $200,000 on a major new public artwork.

The city is looking for expressions of interest from artists, and prominent sites for the artwork have already been earmarked:

• Birdwood Square on the corner of Beaufort and Brisbane Streets;

• The corner of Bulwer and Vincent Streets;

• Ivy Park on the corner of Charles and Carr Streets; and,

• Beatty Park Reserve on the corner of Charles and Vincent Streets.

Vincent mayor Emma Cole says: “Vincent is well known for our murals and festivals, but we are keen to see other forms of public art for our community to interact with.

• The Big Blue Head was paid for by a development on Charles Street.

Prominent

“We want to see this artwork in a prominent location, to have an impact and to signal that you are in a creative place.”

The project is part of the city’s Arts Development Action plan, released late last year, which aims to make Vincent the arts capital of WA.

“We know that art is something our community wants to see more of,” Ms Cole says. “Public art was a subject that came up repeatedly in conversations we had with residents during our Imagine Vincent community engagement.”

The “Percent for Art” fund will be used to pay for the new artworks.

Vincent was the first council in WA to introduce a PFA policy, which requires developers to contribute one per cent of the total cost of any development over $1million towards a public artwork.

In the past many of those artworks were integrated into the same building by the developer, leading to some half-arsed, uninspired works in tucked-away locations.

“They are shocker barry crockers,” then-Vincent mayor John Carey said in 2015, when they tightened up the rules to try and improve the quality of PFA artworks.

He said one particularly shoddy piece of art on Fitzgerald Street (now removed), looked like it could be debris that fell off the top of the building during construction.

Vincent council has got better results by pooling the cash and commissioning an artist to craft a bigger work that’s not necessarily tied to one building – like the Fitzgerald Street robots.

The city’s accepting submissions of interest for the new artworks until September 9.

After that there will be concept designing for two months and some community engagement sessions. Installation is scheduled for June next year.

by DAVID BELL

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