oOh!media turns Melbourne into a canvas for Australian artists

Chris Pash
By Chris Pash | 16 September 2020
Adam Lee - Our Song in the Night, 2020. Image: Kate Collingwood

oOh!media has launched a Melbourne campaign across its street furniture and rail sites, showcasing works by Australian artists from contemporary commercial gallery STATION.

The campaign highlights meaningful art reflecting lockdown, reaching the city’s commuters and essential workers at multiple points throughout the day.

Artworks created for the campaign focus on COVID, the artists’ interpretations of emotions felt during lockdown and some of the possibilities and positives to come out of Victoria’s isolation.

Neil Ackland, chief content marketing and creative officer at oOh!, says the campaign is a small gesture to help Melburnians through difficult times.

“With art galleries currently closed, we saw an opportunity to make full use of our sites as a creative canvas and positive public space medium," says Ackland.

"All the works from these talented artists were created during the height of lockdown, and echo the range of emotions felt by Victorians right now.

“By featuring these works on our sites throughout the city, we’re giving artists a canvas, effectively turning Melbourne’s streets into a gallery.

"Our street and rail network reaches a lot of people – around 95% of Melburnians in normal times – so we’re hoping as many people as possible get to see this.

"If we can encourage some moments of quiet reflection from the chaos of lockdown, then it’s worth it.”

Samantha Barrow, STATION’s gallery director, says the initiative comes at a time when the arts sector most needs  support.

“The arts industry has suffered immensely from the COVID pandemic," says Barrow.

"For STATION, like many businesses, one of the biggest challenges has been the forced temporary closure of our physical spaces. From the outset we have pursued new avenues to continue presenting exhibitions to audiences and supporting our artists in this challenging time.

“Most of these initiatives have been focused in the digital sphere, but we strongly believe that the virtual cannot replace the experience of a physical encounter.

"That is why we are so excited by this project, which has given us the opportunity to create a timely and accessible city-wide exhibition.”

“These artworks have been created during the pandemic and are a means to communicate an array of emotions and ideas. Our collective hope is that they may bring stimulation, comfort and joy to Melburnians in this moment of isolation and restriction.”

The campaign features works from Adam Lee, Dane Lovett, David Griggs, Jason Phu, Jonny Niesche, and Nell, and will run throughout September.

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