Launnie locals and visitors alike need not wait for Junction or MONA FOMA to enjoy some fantastic art - we have plenty of publicly accessible art to admire right here year round. And what better time to enjoy it than Spring?
Street art, graffiti walls, public galleries, sculpture installations and cafes adorned with the work of local talent can all be found within minutes walk of each other. It can be so easy to overlook the art around us in our busy day to day lives, so why not take some time to appreciate it? Make a day of exploring the city and taking in the creativity on offer, or just grab a coffee and go for a wander.
Probably one of the most noticeable public art projects in the city is Electric Botany - this project involved a range of artists (established and aspiring) painting electric boxes in the Launceston CBD and surrounds with a diverse range of subjects and styles.
These boxes, mostly housing traffic control equipment, were painted by twelve Tasmanian artists and students from six secondary schools who studied the work of Australian botanical illustrator Margaret Stones. The artworks pay homage to the work Stones created in her lifetime, some of which we're lucky enough to have at QVMAG.
You can find out more about Electric Botany, read the artist rationales and explore the associated art trail here.
See some more of the project below!
A less curated example of public art in Launceston are the graffiti walls at Royal Park, which are frequently painted and repainted by local amateurs and professionals alike.
These graffiti walls are an important space for local youth to discover and develop artistic talent in a safe, legal way.
One artist who's works you may recognise as you make your way around the city is KreamArt - his artistic journey began at only fourteen years old as he learned and expanded his skills as a self-taught artist in the alleyways of Launceston. Kream frequents the Royal Park graffiti walls to this day, and is an advocate for fostering unconventional artistic interest in young people in the form of 'positive street art'.
Kream is a bit of a home grown success story - since his early days of rattle canning alleyways, he has gone on to become a beloved street artist state-wide, known for his colourful large scale pieces depicting native Australian flora and fauna. He has painted many walls, businesses, water tanks, school play areas and even indoor murals around Tasmania.
KreamArt has also received some national and international acclaim, having travelled to China and India to participate in projects there, and completing some notable works on the mainland as well.
Find out more about KreamArt on his website. Scroll on to see some more of his work around Launceston.
More generally speaking, there are many fantastic art pieces by various artists hidden around the Launceston CBD. Here are just a few of them...
Aside from street art, there are also many cafes and restaurants around Launnie that display beautiful art. Lots of this art is by local talent, and may even be for sale. See some examples below.
Off Center displays colourful canvasses, usually abstract pieces. The banner image for this blog piece is also from Off Center.
Tinka Coffee Brewers supports local emerging talent by displaying their works in their bright, sunny cafe.
Earthy Eats has a wall dedicated to displaying a large piece by a Tasmanian artist.
This large artwork at Bread + Butter moved with them from their previous location to their current one.
There are a couple of murals at VegOut - this one was painted by one of the staff members, and depicts the Cataract Gorge and King's Bridge over the Tamar River.
The Dragonfly Tea Atelier displays fun and interesting artworks selected by the proprietor, Sandra.
And of course, there are all the amazing galleries we have on offer around Launceston!
QVMAG has artistic displays at both the Gallery at Royal Park and the museum at Inveresk. This is a great spot to see some really interesting and historically significant works, as well as pieces from local artists and youth, in addition to their calendar of varied exhibitions.
Dada Muse is a gallery that celebrates dadaism and surrealism, and houses Australia's largest collection of Salvador Dali works on paper. All but 100 of his known pieces are displayed here, some for the first time ever publicly.
The Dali collection is made up of drawings, prints and etchings, both originals and copies. It includes works from across Dali's prolific 50 year career, dating back as far as 1930. Some series show how a Dali print was made from start to finish, explaining the artistic process as well as the art itself.
Dada Muse has two floors, the bottom of which is open for free, with donations encouraged; while the upper floor is ticketed for guided or self-guided tours of the rarer works. The display will be rotated every three months.
Another great location to enjoy some unconventional art is Design Tasmania. Located at City Park, this little gallery houses sculptural works as well as jewellery, ornate furniture and other unique design items by Tasmanian artists.