Byron Bay artist delivers epic silo painting
BYRON Bay artist Austin Nitsua has just applied the final touches to his enormous Cowell Silo Project.
The artwork took 20 days to complete, and features local icon Lionel Deer and his first camel.
The project is the culmination of two years of hard work carried out by the Franklin Harbour District Community Development Group and the artist.
"I wanted to paint something unique, and contrast it with a hyper real colour palette,” Austin said.
The artwork has stirred up a rich sense of nostalgia for many in the Cowell Community.
Lionel and his camels have been a rich part of Cowell's history, the local hosting camel rides to raise money for the hospital and parading them in the annual Christmas pageant.
"The response from the community has been absolutely overwhelming. We are in awe the talent of our artist Austin NITSUA and we are thrilled with what has been created for Cowell,” Franklin Harbour District Community Development Group Dee Cook said.
Austin met Lionel two years prior to producing this artwork.
"I was inspired by his unique character, larrikinism, sense of humour and even his creative spark - I knew he was the perfect subject for this platform,” Austin said.
The project was made possible thanks to a grant from the Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, sponsors the Cowell CFS, Meridian Energy, Cowell Op-Shop, Crowies Paints, Cleve Hardware and a huge in-kind contribution from local volunteers.
Shmick (Michael Motteram-Smith) supported the project as assisting artist, and also created his own mural at the sporting complex adjacent to the silo, depicting the Spencer Gulf and Cowell's famous oyster industry.