TRYP Hotel: Brisbane

Tucked away in Brisbane’s inner creative pocket, sits TRYP Hotel on Constance Street, Fortitude Valley – also known as Australia’s first ever, 65 room, boutique ‘Street Art Hotel’.

 

The building itself posses an interesting past. Presumably around 150 years ago, the space was once a clubhouse for the Royal Antediluvian Order of Buffaloes, the Brisbane chapter of an international and mysterious secret society. An antique plaque from this time was discovered in the development stages of TRYP and is now displayed in the reception area of the hotel. Post clubhouse history, the building was a central backpackers hotel which then became abandoned due to reasons not currently known. It was through this time of abandonment that the space became an inner city hub for local and international artists.

BEFORE:

AFTER: An open landscape rooftop bar, ‘UP on Constance’

Previous features of the abandoned backpackers included level upon level of tags, art and scrawlings constantly changing with each visit. A huge staircase leading up to the highest point of the building also boasted rooftop views and a small shelter tower where one could, (surprisingly enough) get free WiFi by connecting wirelessly to nearby business’s access points. Not the ideal holiday destination for most, but it was in this wasteland state that the space truly flourished.

TRYP’s vision and consideration to stay true to the building’s past street style was a respectful and admirable decision by their developers. As old walls got touched up and painted over, new murals appeared to stay from some of Australia’s most prominent street artists, Rone, Numskull, Fintan Magee and Beastman.

“Their vibrant artworks serve as a foundation for the hotel’s distinctive concept, resonating through every aspect of the business, from the eats to the beats, the boys’ effervescent and evocative creations set the tone for Brisbane’s most audacious inner-city haunt.”

BEFORE:

AFTER:

BEFORE:

AFTER:

Hidden in the stairwell and storage rooms, a few of the buildings original pieces still stand and are now embedded into the iconic history of the TRYP Hotel.

Benjamin Reeve’s original character found on the entry level floor of the abandoned backpackers is now an amicable feature of TRYP hotel thanks to Rone who incorporated the aged work into his commission piece.

This security camera stencil and female character can be found in TRYP’s food storage room, a place you will likely need to seek assistance to find, but is still a preserved artwork.

This Fintan Magee piece painted in the abandoned backpackers many years ago also still remains, though it’s now living inside the confines of a Chur Burger/TRYP storage cupboard.

If you’re yet to check out TRYP hotel, we recommend you do. Looking back at the building’s history and forward with TRYP’s developments arises thoughts of appreciation, acceptance and celebration for graffiti and street art in contemporary society. Trust us, it’s worth the ‘trip’.

Image Credits: TRYP Hotel Brisbane, Abandoned Brisbane, Sarah Hazlehurst

Reading: Shakewell Magazine Issue Two

After the successful release of Issue One earlier this year, the anonymous publishing team behind ‘Shakewell Magazine‘ officially launch Issue Two with subsequent parties in Brisbane and Sydney this week.

After gauging a mixed reaction from supporters, critics and police task forces alike, the production of Issue Two is interesting in itself.

There’s just something about illegal art that bestows bees in everyone’s bonnet!

The recent loss of one of Shakewell’s key founders, known graffiti king ‘Fawts’ to a tragic painting related accident has left devastating heart break on the magazine and its followers, but all appear adamant Shakewell will continue in hour of their Lost Soul.

Brisbane will host the first launch party this Friday night at Beach Burrito in Fortitude Valley and Sydney will see the second also at Beach Burrito in Coogee with the renown artist, Scottie Marsh painting live at the event.

Issue Two will be on sale at both launch parties and is also available online here.

Outside: The Pillars Project – Brisbane

In the fierce lead up to the ‘cultural celebrations’ of the G20, Brisbane city has seen a number of creative transformations. One we hope can withstand the test of ‘world leader time’ is The Pillars Project.

Thanks to Queensland Rail, Brisbane City Council, the accredited artists and the approaching arrival of some important political visitors, the massive underpass area of South Brisbane railway line is now site to an ‘outdoor art gallery’. This amazing series of enormous pillar murals each stands over seven metres tall.

The Pillars Project encompasses the work of a number of local street and graffiti artists including Gus Eagleton, Guido Van Helton, Gimiks Born, Fintan Magee and Mik Shida.

Though it is questionable why our vastly multicultural, multifaceted and multidisciplinary city council has rejected, covered up and even criminalized such creative projects in the past, any change moving towards artistic appreciation is a success to be acknowledged and commended. It almost feels as though the pillars are a long awaited award for Brisbane’s creative community. Street art you can appreciate without worrying it will be buffed out before your next visit. Hell, it’s been a long time coming. Brisbane’s finally catching up.

Interestingly, Fintan Magee has replicated the original mural that was removed by Brisbane City Council at the Cultural Center earlier this year. Causing quite a controversy at the time, the mural was removed because the buff squad claimed it to be ‘graffiti’ even after Magee had written approval to paint the mural. Created to commemorate the Brisbane floods, the mural has now been revived and is at least five times its original size. An ironic and intelligent move from Magee.

The pillars are located at the corner or Merivale and Montague road, just down from the Gallery of Modern Art in South Brisbane.

Opening: Benjamin Reeve ‘Ornament’ Exibition – Toowomba

Prevalent and celebrated street artist Benjamin Reeve launches his solo exhibition, ‘Ornament’ tomorrow at Toowoomba’s newest artist run creative space, ‘No Comply’ Gallery.

Exploring the nostalgia of childhood, ‘Ornament’ plays on the hallowed and harrowing memories of youth. Using spray enamel, inks, oil and acrylic paint, Reeve creates powerful portraits on paper and wood. Each unique piece, representing a mirrored snapshot of self-inquiry.

The official launch opens Friday 24th October from 7pm – 9pm with the works hanging until 15th November.

Well worth the 1.5 hour trek (from Brisbane), Toowoomba has plenty to offer this weekend. Make the most of the journey and stick around for Kontraband Studios first birthday party on Sunday to see live painting from a number of artists including Brisbane’s own Reals and John Kaye and Perth’s Ayres.

As Ayres is making the long winded journey from the other side of Australia to catch Benjamin Reeve and party with the Kontraband kids, we think you should too.

Where ever across our great nation you are tomorrow, Tbar is the place to be.

Interview: 5Fingers

Following the interesting arrival of new abandoned art installation, The Opening Hours caught up with the mysterious pair behind the 5Fingers project. Adapting a ‘run by thieves, worn by vandals’ mentality, it seems this local label have a lot more to offer than just fine threads.

What is 5Fingers and how did the idea originate?
We were kicking back over a few drinks, having a rant over some clothing companies and how they plug the same shit just to earn a few dollars. 5Fingers was created not as a business idea, but as a way for us as artists to express our creative side and inject our art into wearable threads. 5Fingers is a clothing line, however as artists, we want to play around a bit and keep our hands on the street by creating innovative installations and art projects.

Give us a run down of this installation.
We just wanted to do something different. We’re so used to the usual street art medium of paper and painting on walls in a 2D form. So to try something new, we’ve thrown up a 3D installation. We used multiple layers of sticky tape to form the letter structure then strategically placed small LED lights to help bring the letters to life. We want to push graffiti down new paths.

Is it still on display at the abandoned mall?
Yeah, it’s still on display and we don’t plan on touching it. It will be interesting to see how it’s doing down the track. We encourage people it to have some sort of fun if they come across it. Change it up, do what ever you want with it.

Describe where you live.
In a government controlled police state, a place we like to call Brisbane.

What do you love about your city?
I guess we love the ignorance. Brisbane is set back in the past with a lot of its infrastructure, trends etc so when people see something new and completely different, it’s fresh and makes a big impact on them.

What’s your background in ‘the industry’?
Growing up both of us got caught up in the street culture. Graffiti, photography, hip hop, skateboarding… It became captivating and I guess we’ve both never really left the scene.

Any other mediums you’re looking to explore?
We want to start pushing the boundaries with new mediums. We have some plans down the track to create an installation using natural elements. You’ll have to keep your eyes peeled for that one.

What can we expect from 5Fingers in the future?
A full range of clothing, along with an integration of cool installations and art projects that provide a new and different perspective on street culture. I guess you could say we don’t just want to be known as just a clothing line.

5Fingers will be launching their website and online store later this month. For more information on the label and their projects, head to their Instagram account, @5fingersclothing.

Event: GC Paint Pit

The team at 40/40 Creative and their aerosol allies have banned together to present Gold Coast Paint Pit, a live painting, urban renewal event powered by V8 Superfest.

Over four days Alex Lehours, John Kaye and Lachlan Hansen will transform four boring walls into contemporary pieces of art across a number of prevalent Gold Coast locations.

Friday 17th – 69 Nerang Street, Southport
Saturday 18th – BSKT Cafe, Nobby’s Beach
Sunday 19th and Monday 20th – Waxy’s Irish Pub Surfers, Paradise (Major Event)
Wednesday 22nd – Guardian Pharmacy, Chirn Park

Session times and additional information here.

Event: Scribble Slam – Brisbane

Scribble Slam is a 90-minute live art battle between two artists surrounding a surprise theme announced just moments before the paint battle begins. Hosted at Kerbside bar in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, the winner of the battle is chosen by two judges and a crowd vote. The two artworks remain on display at Kerbside bar for one month until the next round of Scribble Slam when the walls are buffed out and painted again by the next round contestants.

Always entertaining an interesting crowd, the Scribble Slam canvas has attracted a number of excellent Queensland artists including Gus Eagleton, Reane Awen, Paul Harris, TwoLaks, Barek, Square One, Teens On Acid, Cherie Strong and Alby Mangles.

This Thursday round 19 sees two talented ladies, Buttonss and Bambi Wants Revenge battle it out for the crowd vote from 7pm.

For more information check out the Scribble Slam event page.

Opening: Square & Friends Gallery

Square & Friends Gallery is an articulate new space providing creative individuals with a stage to project their voice to deliver unique stories in the form of visual representation. Run and curated by local artist and innovator, Conrad Square, Square & Friends offers an exclusive opportunity for artists to exhibit their works in a unique new location on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland.

The exhibition space opened it’s doors to the public in September to expose and educated the public to the world of art. Not just the regular gallery standard of fine art, but art of all levels and styles.

The current exhibition on display is ‘Friends’, a group show featuring some of Queensland’s most prominent street/graffiti personalities including Kiss, Ekaer, John Kaye, Reals, Mouf and Buttons. After an amazing response to the gallery’s launch last month, the ‘Friends‘ show has been extended until the end of October. We highly recommend checking it out.

For more information follow Square & Friends Gallery on Instagram or Facebook @squareandfriends
 

 

Reading: No Cure Magazine – Issue Five

Coming along way since their Pozible ‘Printed Issue’ campaign in 2013, Australian independent art magazine, No Cure celebrates the release of their fifth issue, themed ‘Graffiti and Urban Exploration.’

Boasting Beastman’s colourful cover art and featuring the works of world renown artists including Indie 184, Simon Silaidis, A.CE, BR1, Don1, Martain Whatson and Bianca of Abandoned Brisbane, this issue follows No Cure’s traditional A class design style with added interviews, alluring imagery, argumentative opinions and interview features. As a stimulating summary of work surrounding the urban environment and the urban artists who’ve (literally) made their mark on it, we recommend giving it a gander.

You can grab a copy from local newsagents, or online here.