19/7/12 – Hosier Lane, Melbourne
Last Thursday I visited Hosier Lane in Melbourne, which is renowned for creative street art and graffiti. I have always enjoyed walking through Hosier Lane ever since I was 16 and the graffiti does change quite regularly. While I was sitting in a cafe, I recognised a very interesting artwork from the corner of my eye and the image reminded me of the Mexican sugar skulls.
The design does feature similarities with the Mexican skulls through the visual elements that are used such as shape, colour and tone, which appear on top of the woman’s face. The nose and the mouth also features very faint outlines, which may reflect the image of the skull, when the image is viewed from another angle.
One could argue that the Mexican skulls do feature decorative illustrations, which is exemplified through the style of the artwork, such as the woman’s face, which may initiate a close resemblance to makeup or face paint.
The graffiti would create an interesting makeup design and perhaps I could take my camera to Hosier Lane in order to take high quality photographs of the artworks on display. There are other images or designs that I had recognised through my visit to Hosier Lane, which did become an area of interest for quite some time.
I did recognise a black and white image of the skull, walking past a mountain of skulls and bones through Hosier Lane, although I cannot specify the artist’s name at this particular point in time. I will find the name of the artist after a few more visits to Melbourne.
The image features an interesting composition between the skeletal figure wearing a sombrero and sinister or morbid representations of the skull, which are positioned towards the left hand side of the artwork. The image also provides a representation of Hosier Lane, which is evident through the placement of the images at the top, which are mini artworks that are usually displayed within an outdoor setting. There is a date at the top, which may exemplify how quickly the graffiti changes on Hosier Lane.
There is a large image of a horse, which features a very unique style. The image emphasises the horse’s skull and skeletal body through the sharp use of line or texture. The size of the image definitely impacts the viewer’s perception of the image and it is possible to feel quite small when you are standing next to the horse.
The image could be considered as quite surreal, although the colours may create a retro style, which also creates a dynamic composition between the elements within the actual design.
The horse is very creative and imaginative, which effectively demonstrates that graffiti is an acceptable art form within the postmodern culture. The purpose of this particular investigation was to determine whether the image of the skull has become a popular form or representation within urban street culture. From previous observations, there are alley ways around Melbourne that do feature the image of the skull within different styles or formats.
The objective over the next few days is to hunt for the image of the skull within the city of Melbourne in order to emphasise how the skull has become a cultural icon within the Australian culture. Stay tuned for further updates! Hosier lane is definitely worth visiting especially if you are interested in graffiti and street art!
Victoria Holman, Graffiti: art or crime? Aug 21st 2008, The Telegraph, 2012, http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/culture/victoriaholman/4968827/Graffiti_art_or_crime/ (Accessed 19/7/12)
Hayden Case, Hosier Lane, Laneway Melbourne Talks Melbourne, 2011, http://lanewaymagazine.com.au/hosier-lane/ (Accessed 19/7/12)