Rainbow Storytime (Library at the Dock) – Midsumma Festival
There isn’t a better location for local, proud artists to express themselves unto their peers and appreciators. The Docklands library is silent with students hitting the books or browsing the social networks. It’s the perfect atmosphere to embrace one’s intellect and take in the surroundings of the dock; the water; and Melbourne City sky line.
In honour of the Midsumma festival, a mural was cleverly constructed with the use of paper-back literature. Titled ‘Rainbow Storytime’, the piece aims at expressing that the key to making any family, is love (as interpreted from the tagline ‘Love makes any family’). It was refreshing to see a piece of art work communicate to its audience in such a way that the attempted abstractness of it all cancelled out by the power behind the message. The piece tells a story; as you walk along the glass cabinet you’re following a road. As you follow it along, you’re immersed in the creativity. All along the back of the illustration are cut-outs of people in celebration. This is contrasted against the main features of the piece in which the colour highlights the first part of the story. When viewing what can be described as the first frame of the piece, the cut out shadows of people in colour seem to be content; a couple embracing one another.
As you continue along to the next frame, the cut out shadows of people are to be questioned, and used as a tool to assert the aim of the piece. It’s as if the artist/s acknowledge the gap between the generations of our society. There’s been a harrowing question looming over those of age and tradition that the youth have been able to take on and embrace. Without being aware of the tagline whilst viewing this piece, it was difficult to grasp the true point of centre. However – from looking at the features individually and how they contrasted against each other, I found the themes and concerns. Concerns of individuals being cast to be considered a minority in beliefs; whilst they are celebrating, others around them are aloof. A major feature that is cast off into the background, as mentioned above, is the shadow cut-outs of people celebrating in black and white.
The artist/s acknowledge the sense of concern and debate should be as easy as black and white to let go of. The centre of concern for this piece is for the push for obliterating the drab dispositions our society has on the idea of traditions and normality. The colour contrasting used displays the imbalance between the minority and majority of believers out there that embrace, or avoid change.
This piece of work sends a strong message to viewers with its apparent subtlety. To me it communicates inevitability; this life is a journey in which each new generation acts as a learning tool to society. It’s inevitable that we will come across opportunities to change and we must embrace it in order to succeed with happiness. To fit into the tagline: “Love makes any family”, our society consists of multiple strays from the typical family dynamic; we’re not predictable anymore. We as a community of human beings should be able to embrace the idea that “family” revolves around; love. Children are brought into the world with love and we are to live our lives to fulfil that prophecy in which we were created. This display of generation gaps and the existence of a minority vs majority debate pulls together a creative, and well thought-out construction that leaves you feeling refreshed and proud to have been a part of.
Review by Jayme Constandino