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Tuesday, 19 March 2019 07:28 am

Look up and take notice: Your council paid $10k for this

mural1000FREYBERG pool recently received a facelift in the form of a temporary mural, entitled Portal, as part of Wellington City Council’s public art programme. Created by local artist Victor Berezovsky, the artwork came with a price tag of $10,322 and shelf life of five years. Some nearby residents took exception.

Council spokesperson Michelle Brooker says: “We carried out extensive consultation with residents who opposed the mural.  This consultation resulted in us applying for resource consent, a process we wouldn’t normally be required to do for a mural.”  Only about three people raised formal objections, according to the council.

So, ten grand for an artwork which will be painted over in five years, and some unhappy locals to boot.  An ill-advised artistic adventure or a feather in Wellington’s cultural cap? NewsWire took to the streets to find out.                                                                
                                                                 
sally-1501Sally (right), Milton: “My friend pointed it out to me the other day and I was like, Whoah. I don’t rate it very highly, it’s pretty strange. I don’t understand where that 10 grand comes from.

“I think the council’s wasted their money.”

Therese, Brooklyn: “I wouldn’t have noticed it if it wasn’t for that controversy over it. I don’t mind it. It reminds me a little bit of the wind turbine. I quite like the connection. I guess [the cost] kind of depends what went into it. An artist probably designed it. There’s always a lot more that goes into an artwork than people think.”

dominic-1501Dominic (left), Carterton: “It’s a bit of a tough one; if you don’t spend  the money then the city’s boring and uninteresting and people don’t like it and people won’t come, but then again sometimes you look at it, and the cost of it just  doesn’t seem worth it.”

Scott, Island Bay: “Definitely not worth $10,000.”

Nikki, Roseneath: “It’s not horrible. That’s a lot of money for a surface paint. I don’t believe it was a good decision because it was already a heritage building, it didn’t need any enhancement.

“So no, definitely not value for money.”

denise-1501Mike and Denise, Palmerston North/Kelburn:”I didn’t notice it. I think, if you hadn’t told me it was a heritage building I would have thought it was OK, but I can see why people are upset about it if it’s a heritage building. Ten thousand dollars to paint it for five years?

“I don’t think it’s value for money.”

stuart-1501Stuart (left), Miramar: “It looks like some sort of stencil thing off a computer that anyone could have done.

“Personally I wouldn’t think it would cost 10 grand.”

Jackie, Karori: “I don’t have a problem with it. Anything they can do to tart up the waterfront, you know!

“Ten grand’s on the steep side, but it’s not outrageous.”claire-1501

Claire (right), Island Bay: “Yeah, I knew it was there, but I don’t care about art at all.

“It’s probably not worth $10,000.”

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is a Multimedia Journalist. After spending several years in the UK working in finance and administration, he returned to NZ last year to study Journalism. He has a keen interest in music, travel, economics, politics and literature.
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