· By tara strong
The vivid mural brimming with Anthony’s eye-catching signature characters, frogs and bugs was commissioned in 2018 by the City of Glen Eira through the Arts officer at the time, Sally Stewart, specifying only that the artwork for the station that would hold up to the elements.
Otherwise, Anthony was given an open brief on the theme, as there was a consensus between all stakeholders involved that Anthony’s fertile mind would create a piece bursting with life and colour that would create a lasting wonderful artwork for all to take in and enjoy as they traversed through the laneway and as an attraction for locals and visitors alike.
The project itself took a while to get off the ground, but Anthony’s vision for the space stayed true from the moment he was approached with the initial concept, as he shares; “I didn’t think about it too much, but I wanted to draw on the connection between the name and its connection to the local area’s history as a swampland*. It was important to me as well to reflect Murrumbeena’s active and diverse community, so I represented that by including lots of characters popping into the painting.”
Anthony also wanted to create a work that would stand the test of time and familiarity, reflecting “I always try to include humorous, uplifting elements for people to respond to. I want people to keep finding more elements in the work, like a theatrical happening… so every time they look at it they find another part of the story, or a new part to the story they have created in their response to the painting. ”
* The name Murrumbeena has roots to the indigenous name for the area, which is said to have been ‘Land of the Frogs’.
Year created: 2018
Length: 5-6 months
Dimensions: 2 x 2.4m x 2.4m, multi-panels
No. of paintings/ artworks: 2 large mural works
City of Glen Eira, Glen Eira Artists Society, Murrumbeena Uniting Church, Caulfield Rotary Club and the Level Crossing Removal Authority.