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All Aboard Melbourne Art Trams 2016

The first Melbourne Art Tram for 2016 has hit the tracks, turning the everyday commute into a creative contemporary art experience.

Designed by Victorian-based visual artist Reko Rennie, the first Art Tram – launched this morning by Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley – is one of eight to hit the tracks across Melbourne in the weeks ahead as part of the Melbourne Festival and the annual Melbourne Art Trams initiative.

A revival of the Transporting Art project that ran between 1987 and 1993, Melbourne Art Trams is a partnership between Melbourne Festival, Creative Victoria and Public Transport Victoria in collaboration with Yarra Trams.

Part of Melbourne Festival’s visual arts program, 2016 marks the fourth year of Art Trams, which features professional and student artists and designers reflecting on Melbourne and its diverse and vibrant community.

Reko Rennie’s tram – titled ‘Always was, Always will be’ – reflects Reko’s Indigenous heritage and appeals for recognition and acknowledgement of the original inhabitants of Australia. His works combine the iconography of his Kamilaroi heritage with the stylistic elements of street art.

The 2016 Art Trams artists include:

  • digital artist, Damiano Bertoli
  • artist, Joceline Lee
  • mixed-media artist, Eddie Botha
  • painter, Jon Cattapan
  • painter and print-maker, Mimi Leung
  • art-student, Eliza Dyball
  • co-creators of the Northcote Women’s Mural, Megan Evans and Eve Glenn.

The 2016 Melbourne Art Trams will remain on the tracks until April 2017. For more information, visit www.festival.melbourne/arttrams

Quotes attributable to Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley

“The Melbourne Art Trams project celebrates two distinctly Melbourne assets – trams and creativity – and acknowledges the powerful role the arts can play in many different areas, from public spaces to public transport.”

“We’re proud of the contribution that these participating artists have made to our creative state.”

Quote attributable to PTV Executive Director Customer Experience Alan Fedda

“As Melbourne’s iconic trams transport passengers around the city, they provide the perfect canvas for local artists to showcase their works – which is why PTV is proud to partner with this exciting program.”

Quote attributable to Melbourne Festival Artistic Director Jonathan Holloway

“Melbourne is globally recognised and locally loved for our cutting edge artists and our fabulous citywide networks of trams – our Festival is a unique opportunity to experience these combined in moving works of art, starting with Reko’s arresting design, travelling through the city from St Kilda to Coburg.”