Stockland has announced the winning artists for the 83-metre-long mural on the wall behind Hungry Jacks at Stockland Forster.
The competition saw 13 submissions from community artists – both individually and as groups – with a range of strong creative entries.
Alex Walichnowski, Centre Manager at Stockland Forster, said that it was a tough decision as all proposals were reflective of the region’s natural beauty and community spirit.
“We were overwhelmed with the number of creative and passionate entries received from the local community, and it was a really hard decision to make.
“We initially shortlisted 10 works of art which were then discussed among a group of 30 local Stockland staff who managed to agree on two finalists.”
The collaboration of local artists Donna Rankin, Lara Went, Nicole Bramble and Shannon Crees were awarded the contract for the mural; all experienced, award-winning artists with previous mural experience.
Ms Crees said: “Our design submission is a collaboration that is a textural tapestry, a playful journey and a delight for the eyes. As women, we have woven a collective narrative of the local community – for the community. Through pattern, symbols and icons representing life in Forster and its surrounds, this dynamic and abstract artwork blends in harmony the local environment using the ocean waves to segment each artist’s unique work.”
For artist group member and contemporary Aboriginal Worimi Artist Ms Went, it is important that the unveiling include a nod to her culture and heritage.
“We would like to invite a local Indigenous leader who would perform ceremony as a cultural inclusion for our landscape, and also invite local Indigenous youth from our area to welcome the spirit of this work,” she said.
Sarah Neilsen, General Manager of Placemaking at Stockland, said: “It’s important to support arts and culture where possible – especially with the challenging year we’ve all experienced – and so we saw this as an opportunity to engage local artists while also tastefully paying tribute to the community spirit, creativity and captivating environment in Forster.
“We hope the mural will provide locals with a sense of pride and remind them of their fortune living in such a beautiful area, and visitors a taste of what Forster is all about.”
The mural is expected to be completed prior to Christmas 2020.