We recognise that art in public spaces (streets, squares, buildings, foreshores and parks) fosters a better quality of life as well as a strong sense of identity in the community.
The MRA is committed to a public art program that enriches the Redevelopment Areas and captures past history and future aspirations. Through the Percentage for Art Scheme, initiated by the Government to improve urban environments in Western Australia, one per cent of the total estimated cost of construction projects in MRA redevelopment areas is allocated towards public art.
What is Public Art?
Public art is artwork specifically commissioned for a defined site that is visible from and contributes to the public realm. The artwork can be permanent, temporary or ephemeral, functional or non-functional, as defined by the individual brief.
In some instances it may take subtle forms, such as landscaping or street furniture. Alternatively, urban designers, landscape architects and artists may be commissioned to create imaginative buildings, street furniture, landscape features and stand-alone works of art.
Many pieces express the respective area's industrial and Indigenous history - some constructed from materials found on the redevelopment sites or salvaged from old buildings, while others reflect and celebrate local heritage and culture.
- Northbridge has been home to a diversity of cultures for the past 100 years. To reflect this, a range of public artworks feature throughout the area. One of the highlights is the stunning polished concrete and water sculpture 'Nexus' in the Plateia Hellas.
- In Claisebrook Village, an interactive Art Walk runs through the suburb, showcasing an eclectic mix of 27 separate pieces from 17 artists. One particular public art feature is the winding pathway along the Victoria Gardens riverbank, Illa Kuri, which describes the chain of lakes and wetlands that stretched across the landscape before the city was built.
- Two spectacular new Midland landmarks, tall towers that blaze with colour at night, form the Tower of Memory. Located near the heritage buildings at The Workshops, the historic heart of the urban renewal area, the towers and other lighting features are the works of acclaimed Sydney artist Warren Langley.
- In the Subiaco Redevelopment Area, a set of large steel gas bottle silhouettes and a mural on the north wall of Lord's Sports Club, are inspired by the site's origin as the former home to industrial giant, BOC Gases. The history of manufacturing ceramics was an important inspiration for the artworks at the Australian Fine China site including the "Butterfly Ring" by West Australian artist Stuart Green, which refers to decorative china butterflies made at the site as part of the Wembley Ware range.
Public Art Policy and Strategy
Public art programs, policies and strategies have been developed for redevelopment areas and projects. Area specific strategies support the overarching policies and also reflect the heritage and individuality of the communities involved.
Find out more about Public Art in MRA Projects.