Yarra’s famed Gertrude Street Projection Festival (GSPF) will this year extend its bill of artists, inviting a team of young creatives from Yarra Youth Services to leave their mark on the annual art event thanks to the financial sponsorship of local developer, Pace Development Group.

Pace is currently celebrating 100 projects delivered in Melbourne, marked by the recent settlement of ‘Pace of Collingwood’ at 75 Wellington Street, just 300 meters down the road from the festival.

“Delivering our 100th project was a milestone achievement for Pace, and one we wanted to celebrate with the Yarra community and our Pace of Collingwood neighbours” said Pace sales and marketing director, Danielle Titterton.

“As a proudly Melburnian developer we are thrilled to be supporting this wonderful community arts event”, said Titterton.

Having introduced over 400 new homes and several new retail spaces to the area, Pace has become part of Yarra’s urban fabric, shaping what it is to live, work and play in the area.

“Pace shares Gertrude Street Projection Festival’s passion for uncovering places, exploring ideas and bringing communities together”, said Titterton.

Titled “Into Place”, the twenty-metre long mural on corner of Young and Gertrude Street will be led by Melbourne artist Michael Fikaris and supported by Brody Xarhakos as part of Yarra Youth Service’s Graffiti Diversion program.

“We are delighted to be supporting the creative members of Yarra Youth Services to help them tell their story through image,” said Titterton.

It’s a sentiment echoed by Yarra Youth Services’ youth arts development officer, Chris Parkinson who believes the continued involvement in GSPF and first-of-its-kind mural activity will provide an important outlet for artistic expression.

“Yarra Youth Services is committed to finding cooperative and community-oriented ways for local youth to partake in street art, and Gertrude Street Projection Festival is the perfect opportunity,” said Parkinson.

“Site-specific and conceptual, the mural we have planned will shine esteem on our young graffiti artists, becoming an avenue to express out of place contexts, and inviting them into places of positive community engagement.”

Drawing inspiration from nature’s overgrowth, a group of six from Yarra Youth Services will work with mentor Michael Fikaris to bring his geometric motif to life. 

Reflecting the shapes and sounds of the Melbourne city which Pace has contributed to, the mural - “Into Place” will incorporate patterns of physical and metaphorical life into its design, with parks, people, homes and landmarks depicted, including the Bolte Bridge, Yarra River and the Arts Centre Spire.

Keeping with the bright lights of the festival, the mural will be accompanied by a responsive video projection designed by Jamal Twycross-Smith and Chris Parkinson titled “Splutter”.

“Having worked on similar projects in the past, I have seen first-hand how community art projects bring people together, create a sense of purpose and encourage creativity in a really meaningful way,” said Parkinson.

Now in its 12th year, Gertrude Street Projection Festival relies on the generous support of sponsors and volunteers to bring the immersive illumination event to life.   

“We are delighted to welcome Pace as a major supporter of the 2019 festival and celebrate their 100th project with them”, said GSPF CEO, Bianca Bowman.

“The support of such a well-loved community festival by Pace shows their commitment to invest in the local community. 

Pace’s support has helped to ensure a festival that spans the length of Gertrude Street, assists in the development of artists, the creation of new and interesting artworks and developed works for the Yarra community to enjoy after the festival.”    

“Into Place” will be painted from Thursday 25 July to Friday 26 July.

Running for nine consecutive nights, Gertrude Street Projection Festival will be held from Friday 26 July to Saturday 3 August, from 6pm to midnight.