Mural a work of local art

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Cally DupeThe West Australian
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Fremantle artist Shavaurn Hanson and McIntosh & Son Mingenew Midwest Expo secretary Hellene McTaggart with art created by locals.
Camera IconFremantle artist Shavaurn Hanson and McIntosh & Son Mingenew Midwest Expo secretary Hellene McTaggart with art created by locals. Credit: Countryman, Cally Dupe

A vibrant mural will be a highlight of this year’s McIntosh & Son Mingenew Midwest Expo.

The Expo 35 Art Mural Project, to be painted by Fremantle artist Shavaurn Hanson, celebrates Expo’s 35th anniversary and has so far been a work of community art.

Themed 50 Years into the Future, Hanson will be painting the mural on both days of Expo, with visitors able to watch the creation come to life and help paint several sections.

Hanson visited Mingenew in June to meet community members and discuss what they would like the mural to reflect.

She also held sessions with Mingenew Primary School students and taught the youngsters a few new skills.

Year 4 and 5 students decorated and folded paper to create origami that reflected the Mid West’s stunning wildflowers, while Pre-primary and Year 1 students used shaving cream in their art projects and Year 2 students put crayons to paper.

Hanson also held two workshops with local adults, featuring origami, lace stencils, spray paint and plenty of discussion about Mingenew’s important history.

She said she had been told some incredible stories about the town.

“All of my time spent with residents was to help come up with a design for the mural,” she said.

“So getting a feel for the people, the event, stories and imagery — everything goes into the process. I am fascinated by the wildflowers and am considering the everlasting daisy as a theme.”

Hanson said plans for the mural would be revealed during the live painting sessions at Expo.

Her involvement in Expo has also centred on a post card project, in which 500 postcards were distributed to local residents asking for their input into the mural, and a countdown on social media. Hanson photographed residents’ artwork and incorporated the pictures into a 35-day countdown to Expo on the event’s social media accounts, including Twitter and Facebook.

Key sponsor Plum Grove also jumped on board with the social media countdown and has been sharing the images through its accounts.

Expo secretary Hellene McTaggart said Plum Grove’s support had enabled Hanson to visit Mingenew to work alongside the community and undertake the postcard project.

“The postcard activity was a great way to reach people who might not be in the central town,” she said.

Ms McTaggart said watching the mural being “painted alive” would be a highlight of Expo.

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