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Sydenham – A Hot Spot for Street Art

Street Art, Visual Arts
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An inner-city suburb is becoming a hot-spot for street art with dozens of murals large and small decorating walls and buildings around Sydenham.

The central city has become celebrated for its vibrant large-scale street art while Sydenham is notable for its high concentration and eclectic range of murals.

Some have been privately commissioned by local businesses or building owners and others have been publically funded or supported through the Christchurch Art Gallery and various Christchurch City Council funds.

“There’s some amazing street art tucked away in Sydenham,” says Principal Community Arts Advisor at Christchurch City Council Kiri Jarden.

“It’s always had a creative scene and now there are at least five art galleries in the area, including Fiksate Studio and Gallery, dedicated to street and contemporary urban art. It’s becoming a real hub.”

Work from a range of practitioners can be seen in the area bounded by Moorhouse Avenue, Brougham Street, Durham Street and Waltham Road, from student artists right through to international names. One of the most recent works is the commercial mural ‘The Hirer’ created for a local furniture business by high-profile street artist Dcypher last year.

There are multiple works by distinctive urban artist Jacob Yikes and a number of murals created as part of festivals including From the Ground Up in 2013 and Rise in 2014.

Sydenham is also home to one of the older murals in the city which dates from 1988 and depicts two football players, one wearing an Arsenal shirt and the other a Westham United shirt. Originally painted on the wall of a private courtyard, the mural emerged into the public sphere after nearby buildings were demolished following the earthquakes.

“There’s this layering effect that’s visible in Sydenham, the street art evolving and changing along with the city. I definitely think the explosion of street art in Christchurch is helping build our reputation for creativity and fresh thinking, and Sydenham is playing its part in that,” Ms Jarden says.

To find out more about street art in Christchurch visit Watch this Space and  Toi Ōtautahi for more about creativity in the city.



Principal Arts Advisor Kiri Jarden shares her thoughts on the creative process and some of her inspirations.
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