Before this trip, I never imagined for this city to be one of rich, artistic expression. Only to find out that Melbourne is one of the world’s best street art capitals. Canvassed all over the city’s laneways are creative yet, impermanent expressions of art. Each with its own story, each with its own place, Hosier Lane is known to be one of the more iconic laneways in Melbourne featuring some of the best street art the city has to offer.
A short walk from Flinders Street Station, Hosier Lane is easy to spot as long as you keep your eyes peeled on the narrow laneways you pass by. It’s a laneway of so much colour with lots of people taking photos – locals, tourists, you name it. If you’re lucky enough, you might even be able to catch a street artist working on their latest piece! Melbourne is a great city that embraces its local street art culture by acknowledging the use of public areas as a space for artistic expression – with the right permits and building owners permission of course. Don’t go spray painting just any space in Melbourne!
You look at these pieces of art and you wonder what stories there are behind them. There’s art of animals, people, animations and different texts – some almost provocative, some political and some seemingly senseless. But I guess that’s just the beauty of art, each piece has its own meaning – whether it be coming from a certain experience of some sort, it’s up to us to interpret it in our own way.
I loved Hosier Lane for being able to be a space to see all these pieces of art together, telling us so many stories, making us think, making us wonder.
And a little treat for my Filipino readers! I spotted this part of Hosier Lane featuring Pilipinas Street Plan, a community of artists that showcase and celebrates ephemeral street art. Much of their work is based in Manila in the Philippines, but it was definitely a treat to find their work all the way in Melbourne! I eventually figured out that by the time I had taken this photo, it’d already been covered with a…snail. Click here to see the original work of Geloy Concepcion in Melbourne, capturing the Filipino culture through art. Not sure if he named this piece but I think “Isang Kahig, Isang Tuka” (translation: living one day at a time) captures some of the more tough parts of the Filipino culture that he expressed in his piece. He’s an amazing photographer, videographer and street artist based in Manila. Learn more about Geloy here.
I admire Melbourne for being a city that embraces street art. Unfortunately, I’d say that cities like my own, Hong Kong, are slightly lagging behind in this form of creative expression. Of course, some have said that since the Umbrella Movement in 2014, a sense of creative awakening has since erupted as a platform for expression. But Melbourne thoroughly celebrates this art form and it can only keep growing from here.
Street art is unique through its ephemerality. It’s state of temporariness is part of the nature of street art. The way the walls are so alive through its sense of transitoriness, we, as part of the society continuously live.
I’d definitely recommend Hosier Lane for tourists visiting Melbourne.
[Don’t forget to watch my trip to Melbourne here!]