The town of Warrnambool in Victoria has a profusion of public art to find as you walk the streets and alleyways. From statues to whole wall murals, quirky smaller pieces and mosaics, there are a multitude of artistic styles to find.
Here’s a few of the examples I found around town.
This street is a main shopping precinct in town and has a number of pieces to find along its length. ‘Where’s the water?’ is a cute piece made up of seven little bronze penguins sitting on a sandstone wall. These were created by Julie Squires and each penguin’s different pose shows off their individual personalities. Also in this street is the huge 3 metre seal sculpture by Dave Jones which appears to be surfacing out of the pavement. Made of faceted steel it’s a beautiful piece of work and a popular photo stop in town.
Little Liebig Laneway:
This laneway is a jackpot of street art including a striking ocean themed mural by Jessica Meggs, a fish mural by Nathan Pye and a number of other pieces created by Ella Webb and various members of the community.
Patloch Lane (off Liebig street):
Another Nathan Pye creation can be found here in the form of a giant fish. This is a beautiful layering of colours with the giant black fish splashing its way along the wall.
Intersection of Lava Street and Liebig Street:
Piece by Piece is the name of this artwork, an intricate 6 metre mosaic mural which was a collaborative effort of multiple artists from local schools and community centres, managed by Renee Broders. The mural depicts various aspects of life in Warrnambool and surrounds.
David Higgins is the artist who has covered this 30 metre wall with an eye popping ‘wow’ mural of whales and ocean life in a sea of turquoise blue.
Off Timor Street:
This alleyway features a portrait of singer Archie Roach and Aboriginal leader Henry ‘Banjo’ Clarke painted by Madeleine Peters and Trish McKean.
Corner of Merri and Kepler Streets:
‘Ngatanwarr welcome mural – Preserve Past Embrace Tomorrow’ is perhaps the most striking of all of the pieces. Depicting significant cultural sites and stories of the local indigenous people of the Gunditjmara and Great South Coast region, this amazing mural can be found wrapping the corner of a three storey building and was painted by renowned artist Adnate, whose work can also be found in Melbourne as well as Europe and America.
Warrnambool Art Gallery (Liebig Street):
A bright and colourful patterned mural by Marie Cook, Danielle O’Brien and Francis Van Der Mark called ‘Once Women Won the Vote’. It commemorates the women’s suffragette movement and celebrates the high percentage of women in Warrnambool who signed the 1891 petition, calling for women of Victoria to have the right to vote. At the time, the petition was nicknamed the ‘Monster petition’ due to its size (let’s hope that’s why!), so it’s fitting that this mural of giant scrolls covers the side of a building.
Another pair of striking murals cover the sewer pump station of Lake Pertobe. These eye catching murals depict sandpiper birds and represent the indigenous culture and the importance of water for life. They are another collaborative effort by Ella Webb and local community members.
West Warrnambool water tower:
This one is pretty hard to miss as you drive in the western area of Warrnambool it sits on a hill and looks over the town’s main sporting oval. The tower was painted in 2018 by Claire Foxton and celebrates the diverse cultures in the region with faces of three local immigrants. The photograph like work is incredibly detailed and the sheer size of the tower has you in awe of the talented artist to be able to paint something so realistic on such a scale.
There is a map of Warrnambool’s street art that you can find on the following website http://www.warrnamboolstreetart.com/ but even using this there were some I couldn’t find and others I did that weren’t marked. One of the joys of stumbling across art that makes your day!
Have fun searching