In October 2017, I received a grant from the Queensland Government: Arts Qld to attend the Micro Galleries street art project in Jakarta, Indonesia. Ten days of mural painting, pasting up, presenting stencil workshops, collaborating and creating. The highlights included meeting the Indonesian street art team Ladies on Wall, networking with a number of artists from all over the world and being part of the Women on Wall.
Below is the press release from the Women on Wall project:
Brisbane based artist transforms Indonesian kampung into an art gallery. Over the October 6-8 weekend, Brisbane based urban artist Sarah Sculley joined a group of international and Indonesian artists as they transformed a kampung in Jakarta into an open-air gallery. Sarah was part of the global arts initiative Micro Galleries, a global arts festival that works with communities and artists in developing and third-world countries to break down the walls that exist when it comes to accessing and experiencing art. Sarah is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland. This allowed Sarah to represent Australia and help turn the kampung into a vibrant, colourful and interactive art space for the local community and its residents to enjoy.
Sarah’s background as an urban artist specialising in colourful, feminine, layered work also saw her tasked with the role of delivering one of Micro Galleries most ambitious art installations to date, Women on the Wall. The Women on the Wall project saw Sarah creatively lead a team of local women and children paint a 10 x 3 metre mural right in the middle of the kampung. The mural is a creative collaboration between Ladies on Wall, women from Jl Keyboran Nanas 1, and Micro Galleries international female artists and was designed by Hong Kong based UK artist El McColl. The design represents female empowerment and positivity and was chosen as a way of encouraging the females in the kampung to step out from the shadows and participate.
To help her prepare, Sarah spent the week leading up to the weekend in the community getting to know the women. ‘It was amazing to see how the community came to accept us over the week we were there, they really warmed to us and by the end they were treating us like old friends’ Sarah said. ‘And by the time it came to paint the mural, there simply wasn’t enough paint brushes for the women who wanted to add to the wall’. In all it was estimated over 50 women and children joined Sarah and the other local and international artists to add their own creative flair to the mural. Micro Galleries artistic director was excited to get Sarah on board to creatively lead Women on the Wall. ‘Women on the Wall is a new initiative from Micro Galleries and one we hope to expand throughout the world. The response has been incredible and this is possible due to the creative talents and management of the project by Sarah Sculley. It was really special, as a couple of Australians, to be able to bring a community of women from around the world together like this’. Sarah is hoping to join the next Micro Galleries at their next global community arts festival in 2018, ‘I have really enjoyed this experience watching the women and children in the kampungs confidence grow over the week we were there. It was worth every minute.’