Sydney is set to see a street art project that will see large scale murals appear on unused walls, recognising local people with inspiring stories to tell.
Four of Australia’s most celebrated street artists Stormie Mills, E.L.K, Adnate, and Kaff-eine will bring to life portraits of Nathan Hindmarsh, Father Dave Smith, Jenny Munro and Katherine Hudson.
Each of these local identities were chosen as they have left a positive mark on their community, and changed things for the better.
The artists have begun painting on walls in Sydney’s CBD, Parramatta, Haymarket and Bondi Junction.
ANZ Managing Director Retail Distribution Catriona Noble said: “We’ve been committed to supporting Sydney’s cultural scene for some years through our involvement with the Archibald Prize, Spectrum Now Festival and Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras. The commissioning of these portraits of inspiring individuals is another way we aim to connect with the Sydney community
through the arts.”
The Art Gallery of NSW Director of Development, John Richardson said:
“We are proud to support our long-time Archibald Prize Presenting Partner ANZ in the unveiling of their Street Art Series. The gallery are pleased to support such a meaningful and public celebration of the art form of portraiture, which allows local communities to enjoy the artwork into the future, and highlights inspiring local identities.
Through commissioning this project, ANZ continues to build upon its commitment to the arts, culture and people of Sydney. ANZ will also make a donation to each of the subjects’ local charity or cause of choice.
JENNY MUNRO – painted by Adnate
Founder of the Redfern Aboriginal Tent Embassy, Wiradjuri elder Jenny Munro has been fighting for Aboriginal housing rights for more than four decades. Born in 1956, Jenny’s childhood was spent at Erambie Mission, an Aboriginal community on the outskirts of Kowra.
Motivated by her drive to defend the sovereignty of Aboriginal people and to right the wrongs of criminal injustice towards Aboriginal Australians, Jenny completed an Arts Law Degree at Sydney University.
In 2014 Jenny Munro began the Redfern Tent Embassy to protest the establishment of a commercial precinct on the area known as ‘The Block’ in Redfern, Sydney. After more than 400 days of occupation, the Redfern Tent Embassy declared a victory, with $5 million committed by the Australian Government
to guarantee the construction of low cost housing for poor Aboriginal people.
Jenny Munro continues to fight for Aboriginal rights and sovereignty, motivated by what she sees as a system that continues to oppress Aboriginal Australians. Jenny says “the system has removed hope for our children, I grew up with hope, and I still maintain hope for our young people, but the system doesn’t give it to them, that’s why we have an epidemic of suicide in our young people, everyone needs hope to cling on to.”
NATHAN HINDMARSH – painted by Stormie Mills
Retired Rugby League player Nathan Hindmarsh spent his entire career at the Parramatta Eels. He continues to work tirelessly for the community by focusing on the mental heath of young Australians and working to end violence towards women.
Born in Bowral in 1979, Nathan first moved to Parramatta in 1998 when he was drafted to the Parramatta Eels. He went on to have a stellar career with the Eels, breaking the record for the most games at the club, representing Australia 23 times, and breaking the record for the most tackles in NRL history.
Post retirement Nathan has been drawn towards a career helping others. He has been an ambassador for White Ribbon Day, works for NRL One Community, is a spokesperson for ClubSafe, an ambassador for Harmony Day and a NSW PSC Ambassador, amongst other roles. “I don’t know whether it was my upbringing?
My parents influence? I think you just get to a point in your life where you know you can give back. It’s a no brainer,” he says.
Recently Nathan’s focus with NRL’s Once Community has seen him focus on the mental heath of young Australians, conducting clinics and forums on mental New South Wales.
FATHER DAVE SMITH – painted by ELK
A professional boxer and black belt as well as a Parish Priest, ‘Fighting’ Father Dave Smith uses boxing to help troubled youth in Sydney. Over the past 25 years Father Dave has worked tirelessly with at-risk young people, using boxing to save people from a life of heroin addiction and crime.
Born in Newtown in 1962, his parents’ divorce had a monumental impact on a then-teenage Dave Smith. He found himself drawn towards the punk movement and would wander the streets with a knife. It was around this time that Father Dave says he had a religious experience following a conversation with his father about the nature of right and wrong. Father Dave would eventually follow in his fathers’ footsteps and study to become an Anglican Priest. He was ordained in 1989.
In 1991, Father Dave opened the church hall in Dulwich Hill as a place for where at risk youth could get fitness and martial arts training. This evolved to the Holy Trinity Youth Centre and Fight Club which officially opened in 1994. Father Dave says “When I opened the Youth Centre, 9 out of 10 kids we were dealing with had heroin issues. I lost a lot of kids, it was like a bloody war zone, it really was.” Since then has worked predominately with young people suffering substance abuse issues.
KATHERINE HUDSON – painted by Kaff-eine
Katherine Hudson was just 17 years-old when she co-founded Wear It Purple, an influential anti-homophobic bullying campaign in schools. “I saw purple as a way of bringing people together from all different backgrounds and creating one thing…a symbol of unity,” Katherine says.
Katherine has been a passionate advocate for gay and lesbian rights, and social justice from a very young age. Wear It Purple was founded in 2010, after Katherine became actively aware of the rate of youth suicide amongst young LGBTI people. “The fact that gay, lesbian and bi-sexual teenagers are 14 times more likely to commit suicide before they turn 25 is simply unacceptable in modern day Australia.”
“Wear it Purple has a central message, that you have the right to be proud of who you are. It’s a day for everyone and it’s a day of acceptance, and so that’s why coming out of a very dark place of youth suicides, it’s now transformed into a very positive day of acceptance in schools” she says.
Katherine continues to be a strong voice for the rights of LGBTI people, and for the awareness of youth suicide and bullying. She has appeared on Q and A amongst many other TV, online and other media, aiming to provide a voice and symbol of unity for young rainbow people to hold on to.