Monday, June 18, 2018

Silo Art Trail


From the website for the Silo Art Trail at: 
The Silo Art Trail is Australia’s largest outdoor gallery. The trail stretches over 200 kilometres, linking Brim with neighbouring towns Lascelles, Patchewollock, Rosebery, Rupanyup and Sheep Hills.

Providing an insight into the true spirit of the Wimmera Mallee, the trail recognises and celebrates the region’s people through a series of large-scale mural portraits painted onto grain silos, many of which date back to the 1930s.

The project saw a team of renowned artists from Australia and across the world visit the region, meet the locals and transform each grain silo into an epic work of art; each one telling a unique story about the host town.

The Silo Art Trail was conceived in 2016 after the success of the first silo artwork in Brim. What started as a small community project by the Brim Active Community Group, GrainCorp, Juddy Roller and artist, Guido van Helten resulted in widespread international media attention and an influx of visitors to the region and the idea for a trail was born. 

The Silo Art Trail was created as a partnership between Yarriambiack Shire Council, international street art agency Juddy Roller, Victorian Government, Australian Government and GrainCorp, who donated the silos as canvases for the artists’ work.


Brim Silos: 

Located in the small rural town of Brim located on bthe Henty Highway, Guido van Helten’s famous ‘Farmer Quartet’ mural stretches out across all four of the Brim silos. It was painted in 2015 as a tribute to the drought-stricken farming community. Created in van Helten’s famous monochromatic photo-realistic style, the mural instantly became a regional landmark and provided the inspiration for The Silo Art Trail project. 

Sheep Hills Silos: 

Completed in December 2016 by internationally renowned artist Adnate, famous for his work with Aboriginal communities across Australia, the mural is spread across all six silos. It consists of four indigenous faces watching over the tiny community of Sheep Hills; with a starry background that has a symbolic significance to the local people. 

Rupanyup Silos: 

The monochrome mural created by Russian artist Julia Volchkova on the huge metal grain storage bins at Rupanyup was inspired by the local Rupanyup Panthers Football & Netball Club. Known the world over for her moving portraits, Volchkova is actively involved in the global street art movement, and her work can be found in Russia, Indonesia, Malaysia and now Australia. 

The giant silver-painted steel bin grain silos feature two local residents, both members of the local Rupanyup Football and Netball Club. Jordan Weidemann, a 16-year-old football player, was at training one night "kicking around with the boys" when he was selected by the artist. The student said although some people joked that he was the "face of the silo", his family and friends were very pleased, especially his nanna. "She is loving it, which is good," Jordan said. The other face is of 25-year-old naturopath Ebony Baker, who was selected as she was about to jump onto the netball court during training. With a long family history in the farming area, she said she was extremely proud to represent her community. 

Patchewollock Silos: 

The mural on the silos at Patchewollock – population 250 – and marvel at the work of Brisbane-based street artist Fintan Magee, sometimes referred to as ‘Australia’s Banksy’. Painted over a couple of weeks in October 2016, the giant mural depicts local sheep and grain farmer, Nick ‘Noodle’ Hulland, chosen for his ‘classic farmer looks’ and his strong connection to the farming community. 


The tiny town of Lascelles in the Silo Art Trail displays the artwork of celebrated Melbourne artist Tyrone 'Rone' Wright. Rone turns his intimate portraiture to giant grain silos, depicting local wheat farmers Geoff and Merrilyn Horman looking out over the rural landscape. An influential figure in the Melbourne street art scene, Rone has works in major Australian galleries and murals in cities all over the world. 


Before commencing work in Rosebery, Melbourne artist, Kaff-eine spent time in the Mallee assisting fellow artist Rone on his Lascelles silo project. During this time, Kaff-eine travelled to neighbouring towns, discovering the natural environment and acquainting herself with local business owners, families, farmers and children – all with the view to developing a concept for these GrainCorp silos which date back to 1939. 

Completed in late 2017, Kaff-eine’s artwork depicts themes that she says embody the region’s past, present and future. 

The silo on the left captures the grit, tenacity and character of the region’s young female farmers, who regularly face drought, fires and other hardships living and working in the Mallee. In her work shirt, jeans and turned-down cowboy boots, the strong young female sheep farmer symbolises the future. 

The silo on the right portrays a quiet moment between dear friends. The contemporary horseman appears in Akubra hat, Bogs boots and oilskin vest – common attire for Mallee farmers. Both man and horse are relaxed and facing downward, indicating their mutual trust, love and genuine connection. 


The new 30-metre high artwork at Kimba in South Australia was done by Melbourne artist Cam Scale and features a colourful depiction of a Kimba sunset, its wheat fields and a young girl. 

Coonalpyn Silos: 

Not part of the Silo Art Trail but worth looking at anyway.

Australia's largest and arguably most complex mural has recently been finished by artist Guido van Helten at Coonalpyn in South Australia, who painted five Coonalpyn Primary School children. "In a lot of small towns, people really want to focus on the past and history of the town or the industry," van Helten said. "All those themes I really wanted to avoid." He said the children represented the future of the town, and he hoped the giant art work might inspire those children and others "to a path through creative industries". It was the first time he had painted on silos that were still operable. 

An increased number of the cars passing through the are town stopping and spending their money there. "The stopping rate is 40 per hour and we're getting lots of great feedback from the businesses because everyone is benefitting," Ms Traeger, the project manager, said. In a main street peppered with closed shops, two new businesses have opened on the back of the increased trade — a cafe and a grocery store. National company Oliver's Real Food is scheduled to open a store in August.

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