Melbourne is the oft claimed “cultural capital of Australia” – whether this is true or not, it certainly has a wealth of amazing galleries, sights and opportunities for artists. From street art friendly laneways, art events and with an art friendly population, its hard to beat Melbourne for sheer output. Pushing the new waves of low brow, street art and nu-contempotary are galleries such as  RTIST and Artboy Galleries in Prahran,  Backwoods Gallery in Collingwood, Metro in Armadale, Paradise Hills in Richmond, Darkhorse and No Vacancy in the city, and many more …

Melbourne Street Art

Where does one start with Melbourne street art? As one of the top ranking  notable world street art capitals, you could read the wikipedia page, or read any number of books on the subject, but, suffice to say, if you are in the Southern Hemisphere, there are few places to miss if you are an aficionado.

You can take tours of its world famous laneways, and read up on its prolific and much loved artist collectives and studios, including Everfresh in Collingwood, Blender Studios in the CBD, Paradise Hills and Safehouse Studios in Richmond, Rival Revolution/Invurt in Prahran, Cocoa Jackson in Brunswick and many others. Not a day goes by without new work finding its way up on the walls, much of which is covered in a variety of blogs and websites, and on the Melbourne Street Art facebook pages.

Street artists can also pick up any needed supplies from such spots as Obese Records in Prahran, This Is It in Richmond, Giant in North Melbourne and Refills in Fitzroy …

Read on for all that is grand, happening and cool in Melbournes art scene …

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Through The Lens With David Russell – April

It’s that time of month again to show you whats been happening on the streets of Melburn, as always there is something happening.

Below is a selection of some of my favourite shots from Ironlak’s 10th anniversary paint up in Croft Lane. The event saw some of the best Melbourne and overseas artists repaint the lane; Dvate, Sofles, Treas, Sirum, just to name a few .

We also saw Trunk Diner put on an amazing Sunday event with live painting over two months, featuring Conrad Bizjak, Deams, Itch, Lucy Lucy, Jaws, Hancock and more.

Invurt also got down to Junky Project’s first solo show ‘WASTED’ at The Darkhorse Experiment in Blender Studios. Who doesn’t love Junky’s work from his usual suspects the sentinels you see everywhere, as well as some amazing sculptures made from everyday found objects.

There is also some amazing pieces from Senekt in Abbotsford, Dem 189 in Clifton Hill and an amazing collab between Rashe & Bailer in Brunswick; and finally Emily Vanderlism and the Authority Clothing crew fronted by Christopher Skyner, created a great piece down Bennets lane in the CBD.



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Track Side.


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Exhibition – DEAMS – Passing Through – Melbourne

AWOL crew member and expressionist graffiti artist Deams has been wowing both Melbourne and international lovers of his work for quite some time, and the shifts in his style recently have been nothing short of spectacular. His new work has all the hallmarks of a redefinitity, shapes shades and cut out gradiants interspersed with burtst of colorful linework.

As the minimal statement for the show says “This new collection of paintings by Deams presents deep sensory and emotional engagements between the artist and the natural world.” – and the statement is minimal, because having glimpses of the work, who needs the words? The works really do speak for themselves – seriously, Deams work is fkn grand – if back in the days of the beginnings of graffiti, if we could have but imagined where artists such as Deams and his peers are now taking the styles and forms of letter derivative pieces,  we’d all be astounded.

This is the kind of work I want hanging on my own wall – head down to the Abbotsford Convent on Friday night and see it all for yourself.

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Who: Deams
What: Passing Through solo show
Where: St Heliers Street Gallery, Abbotsford Convent, Abbotsford, Melbourne
When: Show opens Friday 18th April from 6pm til 9pm and runs until the 30th April 2014

Check out the facebook event page for more info on the show and Deams website!

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Exhibition – STABS – Keep It Simple – Melbourne

If you’ve ever looked up, really anywhere, around Melbourne, you would have seen the work of Stabs. Its been a while since we saw a show from him, but theres one coming up this Friday night – and its going to be a cracker of a show, as he delves into a whole bunch of iconography developed over the course of his stay in Indonesia last year … read on!

“The frenetic tribalism of Stabs’s artwork is a key element of Melbourne’s visual landscape, especially around Collingwood, where his slaps and posters are omnipresent.

One thing that a lot of people haven’t realized when looking at Stabs’s work is that, over the years, his art has developed its own language of glyphs. There is a complex system of logograms at play, with stories encoded in each piece.

Over the last few years, Stabs’s hidden language has gone from being a background pattern to becoming the main focus of his work.

Last year Stabs spent a month living in Jakarta, hanging out and painting with Jakarta’s leading graffiti crews.

While he was in Jakarta, Stabs kept a journal, entirely written in his own language of glyphs. Each mission, meeting and event of the cultural exchange was recorded as art in his own logographic system.

This April at Backwoods Gallery, Stabs will be presenting the journal as well as fifteen original pieces based on key events from the cultural exchange.

KEEP IT SIMPLE opens Friday 18th of April and will be on display until Sunday 28th at Backwoods Gallery. 25 Easey Street Collingwood.”

We’ve always been a big fan of his work, and we’re looking forward to seeing the show – can’t wait for Friday!

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What: Keep It Simple solo show
Where: Backwoods Gallery, 25 Easey St, Collingwoof, Victoria
When: Friday 18th of April, from 6pm til 9pm and the show runs until 28th April 2014.

Check out Backwoods Gallery and the facebook event page for more info on the show!

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Video – Burn City Block Party ft Charli 2na

Last week Jurassic 5 were in town, and as he does, Charli 2na wanted to ahve a bit of a paint here in the ‘burn – so what did he do? Put on a  painting session with a bunch of Mebourne artists over at Rubix in Brunswick!

“A celebration of global street art hosted by the one and only Chali 2na from Jurassic 5 at Rubix Funhouse in Brunswick Melbourne. Live paint jam featuring Itch, Mishap, Whisl, Lady Killers + more of Melbourne’s finest street artists.”

The Burn City Writers Block Party with Chali 2na at Rubix Funhouse Melbourne from Rubix Funhouse on Vimeo.

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Interview – RSUME

I’ve known RSUME for a couple of years now, and his work has always been something I’ve loved seeing around our city whenever I’ve spotted it. A dedicated and prolific artist with a fresh, clean style that constantly changes up, his work speaks volumes to the passions for graffiti that subsume this city – his pieces are stories told in the dead of night, of letters and colour splayed across concrete rail embankments and listless freight cars.

Paying homage to the writers who made the city a bastion of graffiti, and forging ahead with his own work as statement, RSUME is the embodiment of everything that is fucking great about Melbourne graffiti – drive, gumption and pure, from the heart talent. As the man himself says, its not just about getting up in quantity – its about quality, and like so many other Melbourne writers, he has that in spades.

It’s not often that we repost articles from elsewhere, but every once in a while we see something just deserves the special treatment, and this is one of those times – thanks to MTN Australia and RSUME for letting us share it with our readers, read on for all the down low on one of our favourites of Melbourne graffiti …

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RSUME (Resume) Melbourne, Australia

What crew/s do you represent?

DB. Darling Boys, Dropping Bombs, 42.

When did you start writing?

I’d been mucking around with sketching and tags since I was quite young, however I didn’t really have any understanding of the culture or a wider scene than the basketball court at the end of my street until much later. I started actively painting pieces from 2006

When was your first piece completed?

2006… I did three that night, each one got progressively worse.

What or who were your early influences?

Style Wars, RDC, CI, SDM, AFP, TSF and DTS

Which writers did you look up to back then?

The first writer I ever saw painting was ‘MESK’ CI in 2000, which initially sparked the interested. It was guys like MESS, OZONE and DAZR who showed me what people my own age were doing, that actually got me out there.

What about today?

My mates and crew. It’s always more impressive if it’s someone you know personally doing something that blows you away. Whether its the spot, style or size

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Who is the writer you have enjoyed or had the most pleasure or honour painting with?

I met SHEM RDC early on and we became good friends, he mentored me a lot in terms of letter structure and flow. The guy has been painting for over 25 years and still impresses me with his style and commitment.

What do you think about the state of graffiti today as opposed to when you started?

I’m inspired by the people I paint with, I try not to bother myself with the politics of the scene.

That being said, in the last two years there’s been a resurgence locally; lots of writers popping up and moving here.  Heaps of bombing, diverse styles and panels are running more again. A lot of people are crushing it.

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What paint did you use back then?

Anything I could get my hands on. Got to love free buff paint on the side of the road

Which is your paint of choice today?

I like mixing scrap tins, making the most with what I’ve got.

What inspires you to keep painting?

That I get to live a pretty crazy lifestyle and the drive to out do myself, always developing and experimenting with style(s)

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Have you travelled to paint? If so, where?

I travel up the east coast of Australia a bit, regularly visiting Sydney and Byron Bay. I’ve also travelled and painted throughout Europe

Where was the craziest place you’ve painted? Tell us about it.

Painting solo in Europe when not speaking any of the local languages. Weird scenes played out around train-yards.

There was this one spot in southern Germany. I met up with my contact and he took me to where they were having a party in these decommissioned s-trains just outside the main yard. There was a blow-up pool in the aisle and people were sunbaking on the roofs of the trains while some guy had set up a platform out of the windows with decks mixing tunes. After a swim and a few beers I started painting one of the trains as the sun set. The workers were walking past leaving the main yard, waving and giving the thumbs up. Surreal.

Do you prefer quality or quantity?

Quality, style is king.

Having said that, personally I think the two go hand in hand. I generally paint three to five times a week, that way I can see improvement and feel I’m on point.

If I sit it out for a little bit, for whatever reason, I see my line-work and flow suffer for the break.

Can you tell us any interesting stories from a past mission?

There’s the funny stories and the not so funny, like being threatened with a gun while hiding in someone’s backyard. There was my mate driving down the train tracks in a car, a security guard who was practicing his Jedi training with his flashlight. Once I heard cops describe what I was wearing while copping a chase and re-dressed at someone’s washing line into a pair of chicks board shorts.

A few years back while painting a rooftop in the heart of the city we had only done our fills when I noticed a squad car parked below us with a cop pointing up. Before long there was another car parked in the rear alley. My mate decided to parkour his way down a few levels to suss out a possible exit, he was spotted, made a quick dart to an adjacent building when he fell through a skylight. Minutes later he’s being dragged out of the building by two cops yelling “where’s your mate?!” and not being able to figure out how we got up. I realised they had no idea how to reach me; a stand-off commenced. I spent the next hour trying to beat the high-score on Snake 2 on my phone while they scratched their heads. I heard a sound and peaked over the railing to the scene of this main street being blocked off with barriers, a third police car and the fire brigade, which were now ascending a cherry picker towards me with two cops inside. They were so focused on the front I just missioned down the back of the building.

A few blocks down I bumped into a friend, suggested getting a much deserved beer to which he laughed and said “you’re not getting in anywhere bleeding and covered in mud.”

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If you could paint anywhere, where would it be?

The Renaissance era, those guys were boss.

Who would you most like to paint with?

Like minded, good people.

A lot of writers listen to tunes when they are painting legally, what would be on in your headphones?

WuTang again and again … Lately I’ve been digging Action Bronson and Oddisee.

Shout out to the DB boys, everyone else I paint with and my lady

Thanks to MTN Australia

R.I.P Rates


We’d like to give a big thanks to MTN Australia and RSUME for letting us re-post this one up! You can find the original interview over at MTN Australia

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Exhibition & Preview – Sam Octigan – What You Cant Forget – Melbourne

Strangely enough, it was only at last years 615 Studios group show that I had my first chance to really check out some of Sam Octigans work in person – and what I saw left me wishing I had a pile of his work up on my walls.

Grandly enough, Sam has a show opening this week at the Just Another Project Space in Prahran, and it looks to be a real beauty of a show.

"Just Another Project Space is proud to present What You Can’t Forget, an exhibition of painted works on canvas by Melbourne artist Sam Octigan. Following up his debut 2012 solo show ‘Of Two Minds’, the exhibition will feature larger works on canvas as well as a site-specific mural installation.

In this body of work, Octigan examines the idea of history repeating itself, the ways in which we subconsciously cling to certain moments in our lives and how these experiences underwrite the way we see things like certainty, truth, justice, faith and love. Even after having acknowledged the fallibility of these experiences. We feel ourselves acting out based on impressions we take on as children, only half aware as adults, of how these experiences are hard-written into our consciousness.

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We grasp at them, as if attempting to solve a riddle, as they fall in and out of the ether. Life remains cyclical. Doors are opened and closed, wires connect and disconnect, memories surface and disappear.

These themes are represented in each work visually, through Octigan’s use of composition, line, color and contrast. Featuring detailed realistic renderings framed with dynamic abstractions and an emphasis placed on composition, the paintings read almost as visual riddles, compelling the viewer to engage, and connect their own dots. What You Can’t Forget show’s Octigan’s growth and current focus as an artist, with both the works visual and conceptual increasing complexity.

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The opening reception of ‘What You Can’t Forget’ takes place on the 10th of April, 6pm at Just Another Project Space, 153 Greville St Prahran and runs until the 27th April"

Just take a few minutes out to check out this video preview of the entire show …

SAM OCTIGAN – What You Cant Forget from Michael Danischewski on Vimeo.

After seeing all these preview images, if we weren’t looking forward to this show already, we’re doubly looking forward to it now – see you all there!

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Who: Sam Octigan
What: What you Cant Forget solo show
Where: Just Another Project Space, 153 Greville St Prahran, Melbourne
When: Show opens Thursday April 10th from 6pm til 9pm and runs until 27th of April

Check Sam Octigan as well as the out the facebook event page for more info on the show!

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Sunshines Top 10 – March 2014

Man, are we already a quarter of the way through 2014? It seems like we just had New Years … but hey, even though time rolls on, Dean Sunshine is still out there snapping, getting a whole bunch of shots of his favourite work from around Melbourne every month – here are some of his latest shots!!

1. Dmote + Sage – Unspecified location
2. Shida – Hosier Lane
3. Bailer + Dirty Sanchez, RSUME – stkilda
4. Tom Civil – Northcote
5. Inpak – South Yarra
6. Senekt – Collingwood
7. Binge – Clifton Hill
8. Unwell Bunny + Milan – Balaclava
9. Vans The Omega + Hitnes – Hosier lane
10. Shida, The Yok, Sheryo, Frank151 – Brunswick
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Snapshots – Ironlak 10th Anniversary – Paintup In Croft Lane

Croft alley saw a complete re-do last week, celebrating Ironlak’s 10th anniversary, with a stellar line up of some of Australia’s best graffers. We were down there on most of the days, checking out the work as it went up.

Artist’s such as Dvate, Sofles, Vans the Omega, WANE, Phibs, Dem 189, Sirum and many more got their work up on the walls, and David Russell caught it all on memcard with a damn nice fisheye. Take yourself down to Croft alley if you’re in Melbourne and check out the dopeness for yourselves.

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Exhibition – Urban + Iconic – Bundoora – Melbourne

We heard bits and pieces about this rad show opening up this weekend in the iconic Bundoora Homestead, and looking at the names on the flyer it looks totally rad – theres some great names there, and theres sure to be some great art in store, being curated by Juddy Roller and all!

“There is now no debate as to whether or not street art and its practitioners have been accepted into the mainstream consciousness. Embraced by tourism as a means to attract visitors, exploited by advertising agencies as hip backdrops to sell the latest urban SUV, and hashtagged to hell and back on social media networks; the image of street art and graffiti and what it represents is here to stay.

But exactly what it represents remains a contentious issue. Born from a necessity to rebel and express, graffiti & street art have developed to a point where it has penetrated the upper echelons of fine-art institutions around the world. It’s purists versus progressives and those that steadfastly cling to sentimental ideals and refuse to evolve get left behind.

Embracing the movement, it is forward-thinking initiatives such as the ‘Urban and Iconic’ exhibition sponsored by Darebin City Council that further legitimise the seriousness of the art form and its ever-increasing profile.

This exhibition symbolises the confluence of Australia’s rich artistic history with the present day; showcasing a variety of styles, approaches and the depth of introspective extension the medium and its artists have beyond its mainstream commodification. It aims to demystify stigmas attached to street art and educate viewers by recontexualising a selection of studio works from artists who all have a well-documented history of liberating blank walls without asking for permission.

Curated by Juddy Roller Studios, this exhibition showcases street art styles from local and internationally renowned artists currently practicing in Melbourne and features works by Adnate, Choq, Conrad, Drew, Jaws, Lucy Lucy, Makatron, Mayonaise, Rashe, Slicer and Tom Civil.

This exhibition celebrates National Youth Week, 4-13 April, 2014, and is presented by Bundoora Homestead Art Centre in partnership with Community Safety, City of Darebin and Juddy Roller Studios.

- See more at:

Bundoora Homestead is a beautiful space, and well worth the visit – and even more so worth it to check this show out whilst is on until the end of April! Get at it!

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Who: Adnate, Choq, Conrad, Drew, Jaws, Lucy Lucy, Makatron, Mayonaise, Rashe, Slicer and Tom Civil
What: Urban + Iconic Group Show
Where: Bundoora Homestead, 7-27 Snake Gully Drive, Bundoora, Melbourne
When: Show opens Saturday 29th March from 2pm til 5pm and runs until April 27th 2014

Check out the Bundoora Homestead Art Centre for more info!

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Through The Lens With David Russell – March 2014

So much happens on the street in one month, my lens only captures a fraction of Melbourne’s ever changing walls.

To start the month we had Adnate with his amazing seven storey mural, towering over Hosier lane, I also managed to get a car-less shot of Conrad’s piece in  Artists Lane.

One of my favourite pieces was Mayo’s piece for the Park Street block party, I also got down to Trunk where Lucy Lucy was live painting, I managed to get a shot of Dvate’s piece at the Jam Factory.

And to round it off  a couple of mad pieces by Shida & Rsume, till next month guys.



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Hosier Lane

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