Lascelles silos come to life
THE latest addition to the Wimmera Mallee’s popular Silo Art Trail will soon be unveiled in the small farming town of Lascelles, with acclaimed Melbourne street artist Rone paying homage to two of the town’s most respected elders across two 30 metre high GrainCorp silos.
With his work included in permanent collections at the National Gallery of Australia (NGA) and the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), and his distinctive murals being commissioned in cities as far and wide as London, Paris, New York, Havana, Port Vila, Taipei, Mexico City, and Hong Kong, Tyrone ‘Rone’ Wright has established himself as a leader in the international street art scene.
In late 2016, the renowned artist transformed the crumbling interior of Fitzroy’s doomed Star Lyric Theatre for his solo exhibition, Empty. Featuring 12 canvas works, a series of photographic and paper works and a huge, 12 metre high mural, Empty enthralled Melbourne art fans – as much for the quality of the artwork as for the opportunity to experience a neglected icon before it turned to dust. The show drew more than 14,000 visitors over ten days.
Of his inclusion in the Silo Art Trail project, Rone states: “I’m really excited to be joining this project alongside such amazing artists.”
“The shape of the silos will definitely be a challenge,” he added.
J o i n i n g r e c e n t l y completed silo artworks in nearby towns of Brim, Sheep Hills, Patchewollock and Rupanyup, the new Lascelles artwork is the fifth of six artworks that will make up the trail, which is due to be officially launched in mid 2017.
Calling on applicants trail depicts the faces of Lascelles couple, Geoff and Merrilyn Horman, whose families have lived and farmed in the area for four generations. Born in the district, the couple married in Lascelles in 1967 and together with their two sons (and their own families) have continued the family traditions of wheat farming, hard graft and strong community involvement.
So how did the humble country couple come to be chosen as subjects of a large-scale mural by one of Australia’s leading artists?
“To really understand the essence of the place, I wanted to find people who had lived here all their lives and get a sense of what the town has been through over the years,” Rone said.
“With a population of just 48 people, I’ve been fortunate to have already met most of the town here in Lascelles,” he continues.
“After a lot of discussion with the locals, I found my subjects.”
The Hormans admit they were shocked at fi rst to be chosen as the subjects of such a public undertaking, but say they were happy to be involved once they realised the project’s potential to generate income, tourism and optimism for their beloved town.
“If it benefits the community then we’re happy,” Merrilyn said.
“I really hope people make the effort to come up here to see the series. Once they do, I’m sure they’ll see there is so much more to discover out here.”