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Taking it to the streets

From BlackWhite magazine - issue 06, palette

Thanks to some talented artists, these communities have been made brighter with Resene products.

Bricks Through Time mural

After noticing a mural that she had completed on a nearby street, the resident group decided to reach out to Lucinda Penn, who goes by LCND in the world of street art. Lucinda researched the area in order to design something special for the 10m tall wall that would create pride of place through its connection to local history. She focused in on Southcott Engineering, one of South Australia’s longest standing businesses, which was established in 1886.

“Their factories took up a large portion of the area in the south-eastern corner of Adelaide CBD, where this wall now stands,” explains Lucinda. “Some original buildings still remain amongst developments in this area.”

Her resulting mural, titled Bricks Through Time, pays homage to the legacy of Southcott and tells the story of the impact the company has had on the surrounding spatial environment through a design that blends branches with motors and bricks. The brick texture connects the design with the original infrastructure of the buildings, and the subsequent decorative brick veneers. Gum nut branches tie the composition together, with nature and mechanics balanced in harmony, and a connection to the Kaurna people as the traditional custodians of the land.

To colour her design, Lucinda used custom blends of Resene Mako tinted with different quantities of Resene White to create the effect of three-dimensional depth on the two-dimensional surface. Resene Rapture and Resene Bullseye provide vibrancy and warm contrast to the cooler greys.

“After experimenting with an array of colours during the design process, greys and reds were found to best embody the focus on history and blend in with the residential nature of the area,” says Lucinda of her colour palette. “The monochromatic greys create a sense of black and white footage on a journey back to 1886. The reds emphasise the theme of bricks in the original factory buildings and the veneers that were erected to emulate this. They enthusiastically pop out, whereas the greys unite to allude a look of textured details on a standard grey wall in juxtaposition with the surrounding townhouses.”

Much like the project’s conception, the painting was also a grassroots endeavour. Lucinda ran workshops with a dozen eager volunteers who pitched in to bring some of the design to life in the early stages of painting. After three weeks of hard work and determination in sweltering working conditions, a humble wall in Southcott Walk has become a marker of identity and engrained itself within the local community.

› To see more of Lucinda’s work, check out her website at

SURFACE: The Miami Street Art Festival mural

For two weeks in July, the Gold Coast suburb of Miami undergoes a powerful reimagining. This past year, more than 20,000 visitors engaged with the work of 200 different artists during SURFACE, The Miami Street Art Festival – programmed by Miami Marketta and the local creative business community. Large scale murals by both highly-profiled and local street artists are the centrepiece of the festival, and the most recent edition saw 16 new public artworks added to Miami’s streets on privately-owned walls. Audiences were encouraged to ride, walk and roll their way through the creative precincts to rediscover transformed surfaces as the artists worked. Live music, a 2.4km long fenceline exhibition and an affordable artwork sale were just some of the other events that further activated the community during the festival.

“Street art is an essential part of Miami’s energy,” says SURFACE Creative Director Emma Milikins. “It stands for freedom and creativity. It is through art that we get to communicate our ideas, to express our emotions and to effectively connect with others.”

SURFACE: The Miami Street Art Festival - mural 2

SURFACE: The Miami Street Art Festival - mural 3

For Emma, one of the highlights was the collaboration between photographer and local First Nations artist Luther Cora with profiled street artist Matt Adnate. “They worked together to produce a stunning portrait of a young Yugembah woman on Pacific Avenue. It is a highly visual piece and gives our community a daily connection to our First Nations people and culture.”

Emma says that using Resene products for the festival is an important part of ensuring the murals’ longevity. “Resene is one of the most trusted brands of paint that our artists choose to work with. The quality of the exterior paint means that our stunning artworks live on and can compete with the harsh Queensland sun.”

SURFACE: The Miami Street Art Festival - mural 4

SURFACE: The Miami Street Art Festival - mural 5

› SURFACE will be returning to the streets of Miami for its third year from 2-16 July. For more information and a map of the mural locations, visit

Defend the Deep mural - Cinzah Merkens

Painting the Defend the Deep mural

Cinzah Merkens has often used his artwork as an avenue to advocate for the health of our oceans. One of his most recent murals in Wellington, which was part of the Defend the Deep initiative, brings sealife from far below the water’s surface to eye level on an Egmont Street laneway. The mural was created with Resene Lumbersider Low Sheen and features rich hues like Resene St Kilda, Resene Tarawera, Resene Niagara, Resene Ayers Rock, Resene Vanquish and Resene Red Oxide. Images by Karl Sheridan.

Ocean advocate Karli Thomas says the initiative is a collaboration among eight environmental, oceans and recreational fishing groups that share the aim of getting seamounts fully protected from bottom trawling and implementing a ban on seabed mining in New Zealand’s waters. “The murals were a follow up to a petition that we delivered to the Minister for Oceans and Fisheries at the beginning of this term of government,” explains Karli. “At that time, over 50,000 people had signed to call for a ban on bottom trawling seamounts. That number is now over 80,000 and there has meanwhile been an inquiry by the Environment Select Committee into the issue and a forum set up by the Ministry of Primary Industries and Department of Conservation to look into this – which we are really hoping will result in protection for seamounts and their coral and sponge communities this year.”

After participating in and helping to organise a number of environmentally-conscious mural festivals, artist Cinzah Merkens says joining in on this project was a natural progression. “It felt like the perfect fit to jump in and get involved! I’m very passionate about ocean conservation, so to be able to use my art as a tool to spread awareness and gain momentum towards banning unsustainable practices was a privilege. I’ve been involved in numerous mural painting festivals around the world, working with the PangeaSeed Foundation as a guest artist for Sea Walls: Artists for Oceans, as well as helping run operations.”

Artist Sheyne Tuffery collaborated on the expansive Wellington mural

Artist Sheyne Tuffery collaborated on the expansive Wellington mural with a style and paint colours that beautifully complement Cinzah's work. Image by Karl Sheridan.

Cinzah has also painted a number of other significant mural projects around New Zealand, including the country’s largest mural to date: an ocean-themed piece which spans the entire length of Auckland’s Hobson Street Wharf that brings an exterior interface to the New Zealand Maritime Museum. “In 2021, I also painted two four-storey apartment buildings in central Wellington – which was a huge feat, embracing all the elements while painting through the thick of winter,” he says. “Last year, I had my fourth solo exhibition at Monster Valley in Auckland and I am currently learning to tattoo at a great little bespoke rural studio here in Hawke’s Bay called El Vardo – so things have been busy!”

So far, there have been three murals completed as part of the Defend the Deep project. “We painted a mural right in the hustle and bustle of Auckland’s Ponsonby Road, focusing on the beauty and significance of our deep-sea creatures and habitats currently at risk due to bottom trawling on seamounts and seabed mining – a highly-experimental industry proposed for our waters. We also painted one in Dunedin as well as another in downtown Wellington off Egmont Street.”

Defend the Deep mural - 3

Defend the Deep mural - 4

Orange roughy and bubblegum coral have joined the streetscape on Auckland’s popular Ponsonby Road to bring attention to some of our most at-risk sealife and habitats. It’s painted in Resene Lumbersider Low Sheen tinted to Resene St Kilda, Resene Tarawera, Resene Niagara, Resene Ayers Rock, Resene Vanquish, Resene Red Oxide and other vivid colours from the Resene Multi-finish range. Images by Monster Valley/Monochrome.

Cinzah says the creatures featured on the murals were chosen based on the sealife and habitats most at risk. “Key heroes to the campaign were the orange roughy and the majestic bubblegum coral. Working with Resene Lumbersider Low Sheen tinted to colours from the Resene Multi-finish range, I was spoilt for hues to reflect this subject matter. For the ocean tones, I used turquoise colours such as Resene St Kilda, Resene Tarawera and Resene Niagara teamed with rich orange and red tones such as Resene Ayers Rock, Resene Vanquish and Resene Red Oxide,” he says.

“I personally loved working on the Wellington mural the most, where we collaborated with artist Sheyne Tuffery. I painted a series of deep-sea fish swimming down the laneway, integrated into the surrounding environment. The scene takes the viewer on a journey as they interact with the laneway and go about their daily business. My favourite sea creature to paint was the alfonsino – a deep-sea fish found in our waters here in New Zealand. I felt its movement and expression were great to interpret through my style.”

“We would be keen to do more murals as part of this initiative,” says Karli, “but we ran out of good weather in summer and autumn last year, and – well, you saw how this summer went – so it’s something we're looking to continue in the future. There is a big role for art in activism, and we were really inspired by Sea Walls and other ‘artivism’ projects the PangeaSeed Foundation has run, many of which Cinzah has been involved in.”

The NGOs that partnered with the DSCC on this first trio of murals were Greenpeace Aotearoa (Auckland), Our Seas Our Future (Dunedin) and WWF-NZ (Wellington). Other environmental groups involved include Forest and Bird, LegaSea and Kiwis Against Seabed Mining (KASM). Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for more sealife splashing its way across the country when warmer weather arrives.

› To see more of Cinzah’s work, visit For more information on the Deep Sea Conservation Coalition, visit

Payneham RSL Mural

In response, Taylor created a vibrant design that balances the playful character of the location alongside a playground with the solemn, reflective and respectful nature of the mural’s subjects – making it equally appropriate for the ceremonies that take place in the shared outdoor space. Rich with meaning, the mural reflects the different military branches while recognising the diversity of those who have served. To add another dimension to the mural, Resene FX Blackboard Paint was applied to a section of the wall that sits directly alongside the playground – enabling children to engage and essentially turning the artwork into a piece of play equipment itself.

“I am humbled to have created this mural honouring those who have served to protect our land and freedoms,” says Taylor. “The Payneham RSL Committee wanted this artwork to stand the test of time, and given the wall is regularly exposed to weather and direct sunlight, Resene products were the perfect medium for this mural.”

When selecting her colours, Taylor opted for a vivid colour scheme that balances the solemn, reflective, respectful nature of the subject matter with hope for the future and a playful aesthetic appropriate for the outdoor playground. “Warm and vibrant colours reflect the positive underlying emotional tones of the artwork, highlighting a gratitude for those who have served and their sacrifice. The same colour scheme also reflects a playful character relating to the colours of the playground and the act of play. Using the right colours was pivotal in achieving such a particular emotional and aesthetic balance, and the outcome has received an overwhelmingly positive response,” she says.

› To see more of Taylor’s work, visit

Resene Harmony

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