Melbourne commuters took to the tracks to vote Valerie Tang as the winner of the 2018 Melbourne Art Trams People’s Choice Award – honouring the year 9 student with a $5,000 prize for her design which reflects the city’s rich cultural diversity.
“I am honoured and very happy that I have been given this special award and an opportunity to have my artwork about diversity and community, on a tram which can be seen by so many people across Melbourne every day,” said Valerie Tang – a secondary school student from Huntingtower School in Mt Waverley.
The Melbourne Art Trams project, now in its sixth year, invites artists to propose a design inspired by Melbourne’s trams as a site for collective engagement throughout the city. The public art project is a revival and re-imagining of the seminal Transporting Art program which ran from 1978 to 1993 and resulted in 36 hand-painted trams being rolled out across the Melbourne network.
“I was completely besotted by the eight extraordinary designs that made their way around Melbourne’s most popular tram routes, literally stopping people in their tracks,” said Melbourne International Arts Festival Artistic Director, Jonathan Holloway. “Valerie’s work is a wonderful view of Melbourne, with a focus on culture, colour and vibrancy – everything that speaks of our city.”
Eight Art Trams made their debut on the streets of Melbourne in early October as part of the Melbourne International Arts Festival program. Commuters and pedestrians alike were invited to vote for their favourite tram as part of the People’s Choice Award.
Valerie Tang’s tram will remain on the network until April 2019 alongside the other seven Melbourne Art Trams designed by Hayley Millar-Baker, Oslo Davis, Nick Howson, Stephen Baker, Oli Ruskidd, Troy Innocent and a recreation of an original 1986 Transporting Art tram design by David Larwill. Expressions of Interest for the 2019 Melbourne Art Trams initiative will open in early 2019.
Melbourne Art Trams is made possible through a creative partnership between Melbourne International Arts Festival, Creative Victoria and Public Transport Victoria in collaboration with Yarra Trams. For more information about the artists, their designs and how to find them on the network, visit: www.festival.melbourne for details.
Image: Valerie Tang and her 2018 Melbourne Art Tram winning design (supplied)