Beautifying bland walls is the new black and a group of youth have been hard at work on the walls of the Ocean Shores Shopping Centre.
The <In.scribe> Youth Arts Project has just completed stage three of The Ocean Alley Project. Eighty metres of pure youth art and expression now grace the alleyway walls of the centre with the artwork now being the region’s largest youth artwork.
From oceanic creatures, mermen and waves to ospreys, butterflies and contemporary portraits the alleyway is a lively experience with something to make everyone smile.
Young artists from the Byron Shire have been working on the project since 2015. Twenty young people have been involved in the project over the last four years transforming their own designs into large scale street-art pieces.
The project is supported by the Ocean Shores Shopping Centre, whose management is delighted by the transformation that has brought colour and liveliness to the centre’s concrete walls.
According to a youth arts project spokesperson, for many young artists the itch to paint their way across their town can be traced to the universal teenage need to establish an identity.
They say that through the opportunity of painting large scale art in the community young people can find their voice and a positive connection to place.
Rory Evington, who has participated in the <In.scribe> program several times said that it was a fun experience to be part of.
The Ocean Shores community have given the big thumbs up to the artwork and many locals now make it part of their regular route just to see something new that they didn’t notice last time.
The <In.scribe> Youth Arts is directed by regional artist and art therapist Karma Barnes, who has been working with young people in the Shire and on international projects since 2014.