Mosaic theme is Byron Bay essence

MEMBERS of the public are being invited to help create a “large and lasting” mosaic that aims to capture the essence of Byron Bay and its surrounding mountains and waters.

The artists behind the project want to know what Byron Shire residents and community organisations would like captured in a major public visual representation of Byron Bay on matters such as community values, environmental principles, and any other ideas.

The call for ideas is a chance to bring out your creative side – but the project also needs your practical help.

The finished mosaic will be a centrepiece of the nationally recognised Byron Arts Classic and be created during that week-long event. The mosaic will be created on-site at the Byron Community Centre’s courtyard in full view of the public who can see the creation as it happens.

In the meantime, the organisers need to collect a lot of tiles and flat-stained glass and are asking as many people as possible are to check out their storage and sheds for left-over tiles or glass pieces.

Vitreous tiles with a 3-5mm profile or flat, opaque stained glass pieces are best.

“We’ll set up a collection point at the Community Centre - the more colour the better!” Byron Arts Classic coordinator Tess Cullen said. “It’s a very exciting part of our aim to bring art to the community and the community to art.

The tentative title for the work is "Kavanbah" - the local Bundjalang word for "meeting place".

“The result will be an accessible, permanent communal visual art work”, Ms Cullen added.

The community consultation for ideas and the Kavanbah mosaic’s creation will be overseen by the Arts Classic’s first artists-in-residence, Pyari Cau and Turiya Bruce.

The pair will tutor up to 15 participants daily and be on hand to answer questions from the public as the mosaic is created over a five-day period.

The project will enhance and extend the skills of local visual artist who will have "hands-on" experience and training in the design, setup, tile and glass cutting and placement skills involved in mosaic work.

Pyari Cau has worked on the Southport Community garden creating mosaic sculptures with Southport Primary School children, Mosaic for Runaway Bay skate park with local children, and Musgrave Park mosaic wall with children from Musgrave schools. She has also worked on the Byron Bay roundabouts and has had many private commissions.

Turiya Bruce has created the 26m x 9m mural for Lismore City Council’s Sports and Aquatic Centre in Goonellabah, and has worked on both of the Byron Bay roundabout projects. She has also created the Lotus mosaic at the Crystal Castle. Turiya is the current GOLDEN Paints (New York, USA) Artist/ Educator in the Northern Rivers. She also teaches regularly at Still @ The Centre, Byron Bay.

Pyari and Turiya are both experienced artist-educators.

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