Thallon’s The Watering Hole – Thallon Graincorp Silo Mural, by Joel Fergie (The Zookeeper) and Travis Vinson (Drapl), has taken out the top gong at the inaugural Australian Street Art Awards.
Announced at a gala dinner on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast last night, the Thallon silos mural was named the “Best of the Best” as the finale after winning the “Best Rural Art” category earlier in the evening.
The Australian Street Art Awards recognise towns, regions and destinations that are using one or more of the many forms of outdoor, publicly accessible art to attract visitors, boost their economy and engage their community.
The “Best of the Best” was granted to the category winner judged as the most outstanding.
Australian Street Art Awards Director, Liz Rivers, said “This win is a significant feather in Thallon’s cap. The Award will encourage more tourists to experience Thallon and the other winning street art destinations”.
Judging was conducted by tourism and event industry leaders from around Australia, lending weight to The Watering Hole’s success.
The criteria focussed on the way the art has been used to attract visitors and bring the local community together, rather than the quality of the artwork. “The towns and organisations behind the winning entries showed clear evidence that they had a powerful vision for future success through a strategic approach to promotion,” Ms Rivers said.
In being presented with the two awards, Thallon was praised for continuing to create opportunities through landmark celebrations and ticketed events to leverage the mural’s appeal, resulting in ongoing substantial economic benefit and national exposure.
Balonne Shire Mayor Richard Marsh praised the Thallon community for their commitment to putting their town on the map.
“Council is very proud of the work the residents and Thallon Progress Association have done to keep this small community going and we’re happy to support them, where funding permits, in any of their future ventures,” he said.
“These silos are now part of a wider Silo Art Trail and have played an important part in drawing travellers to our region.”
The Watering Hole, completed in July 2017, was the first silo mural in Queensland and remains the only mural to be completed at a fully operational GrainCorp site in Australia.
Other winners were:
- 2019 Best Amusing Street Art: “Beach Party” mural, Emu Park (QLD)
- 2019 Best Business Mural: Froth Craft Brewery’s “Froth Lido Mural”, Exmouth (WA)
- 2019 Best External Mural: “Looking Glass Fish in the Deep Hue Sea”, Sunshine Coast (QLD)
- 2019 Best Mega Mural: Narrandera Water Tower, Narrandera (NSW)
- 2019 Best Monument or Memorial: Emu Park: Centenary of Anzac Memorial (QLD)
- 2019 Best Rural Art: “The Watering Hole” Silos Mural, Thallon (QLD)
- 2019 Best Street Art Festival or Event: Colour Tumby Street Art Festival, Tumby Bay (SA)
- 2019 Best Street Art Trail: FORM’s The PUBLIC Silo Trail (WA)
- 2019 Best Utility Art: “Sunset Dreaming” mural, Manly (NSW)