Hamilton bus stop art continues


Hamilton artist Jeremy Shirley's bold and colourful artworks will grace more of Hamilton's bus shelters.

Jeremy began the first of 14 murals around the city last week. These follow on from the 12 he created last year. So positive was the public's response to the murals that Tagbusters team leader Charles Flanagan commissioned Jeremy to produce more of what Jeremy terms "contemporary urban art".

The murals were originally a proactive anti-graffiti initiative but Charles says that concept now extends further, to city beautification and vibrancy. "That factor is equal to the ant-graffiti solution in my mind."

Jeremy sources design ideas from many sources, often looking to the local landscape or demographic of an area when considering what form the art will take. For example, he may incorporate some Polynesian-inspired hibiscus in an area where the population demographic reflects an abundance of Polynesian families.

He said some of his designs resonated with particular groups of people. He said older people often recognised the cubist Picasso-inspired mural near the hospital as they had visited the Louvre in Paris.

"Younger people may not understand it but it gets them thinking," he said.

Getting people to think about the art is what Jeremy aims for. He steers clear from "designated, obvious meanings" so as to deter would-be taggers who may take a dislike to a clear reference. Instead he aims to inspire thought and respect for the work.

"It's about introducing different ideas of what art is and what a great canvas I get to work on," he said.

While it's early days yet, Charles said he would be looking at other funding avenues for more of Jeremy's creations other than council. Regardless of who funds the work, Charles is adamant that Hamilton will "definitely" see more of Jeremy's art.

- Hamilton News

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